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Crew honored for saving captain’s life

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When her captain was thrown overboard, crew member Heather Havens didn’t realize her actions would save his life. But they did, and the International Superyacht Society honored her with its 2013 Distinguished Crew award Wednesday night at its annual gala.


Gary Groenewold, a vice president with Westrec Marinas, told the story of the rescue.


While at anchor off the west coast of Florida, a “massive ship” came by at a high rate of speed, leaving a wake of about 7 feet. The captain was on the upper deck at the time and was bounced into something before being thrown overboard.


Havens went in after him. She brought him to the swim platform where she discovered he was bleeding profusely from a hole in his chest.


“In textbook fashion of her medical training, she held her hand over the wound,” said Groenewold, whose company sponsors the Crew of Distinction award every year. “She used her strength and mental fortitude to keep the wound closed. Later, in the hospital, the doctors said if it wasn’t for her actions, he would have certainly died. We chose her because of her professional training and her heroic actions.”


Westrec has sponsored this award since its inception.


ISS honored the year’s best yachts for its design, including M/Y Stella Marris by Viareggio Superyachts as Best Power over 65m, M/Y Excellence V by Abeking & Rasmussen as Best Power 40-65m, and M/Y Cary Ali by Alloy Yachts as Best Power 24-40m.


Among sailing vessels, ISS honored S/Y Better Place by Wally as Best Sail larger than 40m and S/Y Pumula by Royal Huisman as Best Sail 24-40m.


For Best Refit, ISS honored the Feadship M/Y A2 refit by Pendennis. M/Y Stella Marris also won for Best Interior, done by Reverberi Design.


Other leadership awards were given to Michael Moore of Moore & Company as Business Person of the Year, Giancarlo Ragnetti of Perini Navi with the Leadership Award, and Damen Shipyards for Excellence in Innovation.


Lucy Chabot Reed is editor of Triton Today; lucy@the-triton.com.

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