My greatest fishing buddy - who also just happened to be my Mom - passed away May 24, 2016. She was there when I caught my first bream, first sailfish, and pretty much every other important moment in my life. She was a 3rd generation Floridian, lifelong resident, UF graduate, and huge Gator fan. She also taught school in Orange County for almost 40 years.
She could skipper a 38 ft sportfish, rig ballyhoo, and put a worm on a hook like a pro. In the scariest moment of my life – 8 years old, 30 miles offshore of New Symrna, caught in a thunderstorm that seemed to fall upon us from above, sky black as night, 50 mile gusts, 10 ft seas, with smoke billowing from the engine bay - a bilge fire due to shoddy mechanic’s work - my father running around grabbing/using every fire extinguisher on board, the boat caught in the trough rocking back and forth so violently the outrigger tips almost touched the top of the waves - she was the only one who didn’t panic - she made sure my little sister and I as well as their terrified friends had life jackets on……..calmly climbed to the flying bridge……..got the boat turned into the waves……….radioed the coast guard……..and kept us from being capsized……….with one engine mind you. She was truly courageous. She loved the water – like me - the sea is in our veins (wonder where I got it from?)!
Everyone she knew was touched by her – she truly cared – and her smile lit up a room!
We used to go on long drives together with no particular destination in mind. She loved to simply get lost, explore, discover new things and places…………………so I wonder where she is off to now that she has wings?!
Wherever that is Mom Godspeed! Until we meet again remember I will always love you!!
I miss you.