By Chad Pinder, as told to ITB Staff
I was a mate out of the Square Grouper in Jupiter aboard a 6-pack boat. In March 2018, we had a charter a family of four plus a regular. The day went as planned and we started out bottom fishing then a little storm cell came through. As the seas got bumpy people started to drop from seasickness.
First the mom, then the daughter, then the brother. After about 45 minutes, one hour went by I went down to use the head. When I came back out and up to the cabin the mother looked at me and said “can we not head in if something is the matter?” I looked at the captain and said, “you need to get in here.” The daughter, in her mid-teens, went into a dehydration shock. She had what they call T-Rex arms. Her arms stuck to her chest like the arms of a T-Rex. Well, we were about four or five miles from land so we called the Coast Guard and headed in immediately.
On the way in we were about 50-75 yards from the mouth of Jupiter Inlet when the pump that cools the motor clogged and the motor overheated and wouldn’t start. So here we are in the mouth of one of the most dangerous inlets with a woman in shock and about to die. And we are adrift and can’t get the motor to start because it’s overheated. Thank God paramedics were waiting at the dock with Sea Tow. They jumped on Sea Tow, came out and got the girl from our boat and rushed her back to land where they could give her the proper fluids. We got towed in and the mechanic was there waiting to fix the clogged pump.
Needless to say, drink your fluids boys and girls, even if you are seasick.
Story has been edited for clarity