Last Saturday night on Memorial Day weekend a freak windstorm hit our area and created much havoc for many boats. After spending a most enjoyable day of sun and warmth on very quiet water on the south shore of Spencer Spit on Lopez Island, we went to bed and were awakened rather abruptly when we discovered we were on the beach and aground! It was a rude awakening to say the least.
We were being pounded by big waves driven by 30-plus mph winds that left us sitting, fortunately, on sand and not rocks. We called Vessel Assist and things got better from that point on. Captain Deb Fritz, who is the leader of a great group of extremely well qualified people, came to our rescue.
To make us feel better she told us that even a Coast Guard boat had gone aground! We had to wait 24 hours for the next high tide. Captain Deb and her crew were extremely well organized and we really felt safe and reassured in their hands. She even had Captain John, a Vessel Assist from Port Angeles, come over to help pull us off the beach. Our boat is a 50-foot power boat and a sight to see when the tide went out during the day and we were 30 yards from the water! They pulled us off around 11 p.m. and took us home. They had two captains who also were mechanics on board and drove us home with one in the engine room to make sure things were right.
Had they failed and had to wait for another 24 hours, we could have gone home and they would have provided someone to stay aboard to protect the boat. Now that is service! The crew even brought us a pizza since we were stuck there for 24 hours. So if you ever have any problems on the water in the San Juans, do not hesitate to call on Vessel Assist and Captain Deb Fritz and her wonderful crew.
Dr. Richard M. Lyons