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A Nordhavn tale of thanks and giving

First Aid
Nordhavn 55 rescues 28-footer off coast of Alaska

On July 5, while many of us were still in the thick of enjoying the long Fourth of July weekend, Randy and Rebecca Tisch were busy saving the lives of some stranded boaters. Like the circumnavigating Nordhavn, the rescuing Nordhavn is fast becoming a common phenomenon. For certain, it’s got a lot of boaters thankful for the Nordhavns roaming the waters across the globe. Probably none as thankful as the Nordhavn owners themselves.

Excerpted from Randy Tisch’s blog
(On July 5, 2010) we set off for Hoonah, a Tlingit village across Icy Strait from Glacier National Park (40 miles).   On our way up Chatham Strait we heard a Mayday call to the Coast Guard.  The call wasn’t far from us so we responded.   Apparently a small boat (28 foot Bayliner) with three adults and four children aboard had lost propulsion out in the middle of the strait, and with 4-foot waves and 20-knot winds, they were in a very dangerous situation. We changed our course to rescue them.  Other boats were in the area, but the water was too rough for them to affect a rescue or tow.  It was a “piece ‘o cake” for us.  After about 90 minutes, we were on scene.  The little boat, Summer Wind, was being tossed and blown about.  We could see four children, all of which appeared to be under the age of seven.  During this time we were in constant communication with the boat owner and the USCG.  We had purchased 450 feet of high strength floating line, which was stowed on a real attached to our aft deck rail.  Rebecca tied one end to a life ring and the other to Odyssey.  We floated the ring and pulled it past Summer Wind and they grabbed it with their boat hook. Unfortunately, it became fowled on their running gear, but after a few minutes, they managed to get it tied to the bow of their boat.  Although it was very tense for a period of time, we managed to begin towing them.  After about an hour, we were out of the direct path of the wind and the waters began to subside.  The USCG called and said that they were going to send a cutter, which arrived on scene about an hour later.  By then we were just eight miles from Hoonah, a port that had facilities to repair Summer Wind.  When the Coast Guard cutter arrived, we were happy to let 261, that is the radio ID of the cutter, take over.  We continued to tow Summer Wind for about ten minutes while all parties strategized about how to unravel our towline from Summer Wind’s running gear.  USCG divers were standing ready to jump into the icy water.  After a few minutes, 261 understood the situation and asked us to begin slowing. A few minutes later we were dead stop.  At that point Summer Wind began trying to free our line and was able to do so with a little coaching from 261. After the line was freed, the USCG took over and everyone on the scene thanked us profusely.  We felt both relieved and gratified that we were able to rescue a boater in peril, and that we had the equipment and capability to do so successfully.

Want to read about more Nordhavns to the rescue? Check out the following accounts:
N57 Bagan
N55 Amandla II
Nordhavn 46 Egret and Nordhavn 55 New Paige
Nordhavn 62 Rover

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