Woman saves father after boat crash during Hawaii fishing trip

The family shared their story in hopes other anglers won’t suffer the same fate.
Published: Nov. 22, 2021 at 7:36 AM AKST
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(HawaiiNewsNow/Gray News) – Claude and Charme Moreaus took a father-daughter fishing trip in Maui that nearly ended in tragedy.

According to Hawaii News Now, Claude Moreaus, 70, has years of experience on the water and has been fishing for over 40 years.

Charme Moreaus was sleeping on their way back from a successful weekend at sea. The dad set his boat to autopilot and accidentally dozed off.

His boat had smashed into giant rocks in the waters of the island’s north shore.

“I sat down because I was tired. And the next thing I know, I was sleeping,” he said. “I didn’t know I was sleeping. Next thing I know, BAM! That’s how I woke up.”

She said her father started to make a mayday call, but the boat capsized before the call was finished and Claude was trapped underneath.

Through strength, courage and the will to survive, Charme Moreaus dove underwater, found her dad and pulled him back to the surface – but they were still stuck in the middle of the ocean.

She held her father and started swimming toward the rocky shoreline.

“I kept telling him, ‘Don’t let the water go in your mouth,’ because that’s what was happening, it was going in and drowning both of us,” she said.

She said they swam over an hour to get to shore. The waves were crashing, and they were worried about bashing their heads open on the huge lava rocks.

“We both tumbled, and I just see him tumbling, but we’re on the rocks and I’m like, ‘We made it!’” the daughter said.

At that point, the father-daughter duo was stuck at the bottom of a giant cliff.

There were ropes on the cliff to help Charme Moreaus climb to the top and track down help.

The Maui Fire Department flew in a helicopter to rescue Claude Moreaus from the rocks and take him to the hospital.

With just a few bumps and bruises, the 70-year-old fisherman is happy to be alive and is grateful to his community.

He hopes his story will be a lesson for others.

“We have to learn from this,” he said. “There should always be at least one person not sleeping, and if you’re that tired, you should anchor the boat and sleep.”

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