Local Heroes Win Award

Here’s a letter we recently received from Erik and Brian:

Wanted to say thanks to OCSC for teaching us good seamanship that we were able to help a couple of sailors a couple years ago. Both Brian and I took BK and BC with OCSC and I continued on to BBC, Asymmetrical Spinnaker, Symmetrical Spinnaker and Coastal Navigation. Thanks OCSC!

The following is the article published in Electronic Latitude, April 11, 2011

San Francisco Bay
Delta Doo Dah vets Erik and Brian Jones of the Berkeley-based Glastron Spirit 28 Sizzle were honored with US Sailing’s Hanson Rescue Medal last week for their role in rescuing two Bay sailors on July 19, 2009. The Joneses and their friends were sailing home in typical summer Bay conditions when a sharp-eyed crewmember spotted a small capsized skiff. Skipper Erik sailed closer and asked the two men in the water — both were wearing PFDs and wetsuits — if they needed assistance. “The younger sailor, who looked to be in his early 20s, waved us off indicating that they were okay,” Erik recalls. “We ignored his refusal for help and remained nearby, circling their boat.”

The 'Sizzle Boys', Erik and Brian Jones, were instrumental in the rescue of two sailors on the Bay. © 2011 Erik Jones

After watching for 15 minutes as the two men worked hard to right their boat only to have it capsize again and again, Erik called the Coast Guard to advise them of the situation and tell them that they would remain on station until the pair either got underway or requested help. Several minutes later, the sailors were able to right the boat and get back aboard, but it was clear that cold water and exertion had taken their toll. “The older sailor — in his 40s or 50s — asked me to accompany them the four miles to Richmond,” said Erik. Just as Erik’s crew had readied a tow line, the Marin County Sheriff’s Harbor Patrol boat pulled up and took charge of the situation. “The lesson here is that just because someone isn’t asking for help or initially rebuffs an offer of help, doesn’t mean that one shouldn’t remain on station to monitor or activate emergency services anyway,” Erik noted.

The victims were aboard what looks to be an International 14 skiff. Erik says there appeared to be some damage after the capsize. © 2011 Erik Jones

Congratulations to Erik and Brian for receiving such a prestigious honor — it was well-earned for using excellent judgment and seamanship during a potentially deadly situation. Not only are we proud that these real-life heroes are once again joining the Delta Doo Dah, but we’ll probably sleep just a little bit better in Potato Slough knowing they’ve got our backs!