Last Thursday, Aug. 20, Long Beach boater Jack Gershon spotted a mega yacht entering Long Beach from high atop his Ocean Boulevard condo. He posted a photo on social media of the 357-foot — longer than a football field — yacht owned by Jerry Jones of Dallas Cowboys fame.
Since the Cowboys aren’t practicing in California this year, there is only speculation why he is here. Named Bravo Eugenia, after Jerry’s wife Gene, the vessel is too large to fit in a marina so she has been docked near the Queen Mary — with a view of the convention center’s Elephant lot. (Don’t get any ideas, Jerry).
The $250 million boat features a full gym, plunge pool, steam and massage rooms, sauna and rain shower. Rumor has it that Long Beach Port Pilot Bob Blair navigated the mega yacht in our local waters.
Jones’s yacht has two helicopter pads and huge tender and toy garage. According to on-line sources the yacht's interior design includes light maple wood and white pearl lacquer, with contrasting accents of walnut and ebony.
Around 10:45 a.m. Tuesday morning, Aug. 18, there were reports of fire on board a 45-foot powerboat in the turning basin in Alamitos Bay. Long Beach firefighters extinguished flames in the cabin of a boat, and it was later discovered to be related to a mechanical failure issue on board.
According to Marine Safety Chief Gonzalo Medina, the boaters jumped into the water, and the crew on the 26-foot Grunt, a dredge boat responsible for providing harbor and water maintenance operations, fished the couple out. The beach guards were spot on as Medina said the operation responders were there at “Right place, Right time.”
Long Beach’s Junior Lifeguard Program is not only popular, it plays a key role in keeping us water safe. During the program, participants are taught how to safely enter and exit the water, ocean swimming technique, and ocean hazards.
They also learn basic first aid, how to recognize swimmers in trouble, how to conduct rescues, and our oldest age group even gets CPR certified. This allows our Junior Lifeguards to not only safely enjoy the beach, but also potentially even help others.
Last Monday, Aug. 17, Third District Councilwoman Suzie Price recognized Abbey Saucedo as one of the exceptional people in the Third District. Saucedo is a LBJG alum. Now a junior at Wilson High School, she participated in the program for four years.
According to Abbey’s mom, Tess Parkhouse “At Crescent Bay in Laguna Beach, she saved an 8-year-old boy from drowning. The surf was huge and the boy got trapped in the swell and ended up in a rip tide. My daughter without thinking recognizing the boy was in trouble and rescued him.
"The lifeguard on duty actually came to thank her and admitted due to large surf he was down beach and could not get to him fast enough. He said she truly did save him and a minute longer would have been a devastating situation.”
This week, Councilwoman Price honored Linnea Stearns as the Third District’s extraordinary person. Stearns is 10 years old, attends Minnie Gant Elementary, and is also involved in the LBJG program.
Tess Parkhouse shared this story, “We were swimming, bodysurfing, and boogie boarding in Oceanside at lifeguard stand 11. I was about 60-80 yards out and Linnea was about 50 yards south of me (a little closer to shore) and I noticed a girl whose arm waving seemed to be directed at the lifeguard stand. Due to the surf I could not see the person with consistency. A moment later I noticed Linnea swimming out to the girl with her boogie board.”
Linnea made a rescue of a young girl who could have drowned if not for Linnea’s fast action.
Later Parkhouse asked Stearns how she knew the girl was drowning and she said the victim appeared to be “climbing an invisible ladder.” Stearns used the best analogy Parkhouse and others have ever heard.
Suzie Price is right. Abbey Saucedo and Linnea Stearns are truly extraordinary people.