By Nichole Osinski
Sitting in his truck, the A/C at full blast, Donnie Caison stares out across the boat yard in North Carolina where Caison Yachts’ first build rests, getting some routine work done. “I was kind of a late bloomer, I fished in lakes. I was in my 20s before I started saltwater fishing,” Donnie recalls when asked how he got into offshore fishing.
“I went to work for a guy as a general superintendent in the late 80s at a site development company, and he took me fishing. We went to the local ledge called the 23-mile rock and caught sailfish, king mackerel and other species. I came home and immediately bought a 20-foot center console.” On his maiden voyage fishing for Spanish mackerel, he blew the powerhead on the motor, forcing Caison to find a replacement outboard. He ended up buying a 150 Mercury. “Of course, it was a 25-inch shaft instead of a 20-inch shaft, so I had to raise the top of the transom. So that was my first fiberglass work,” Caison says.