A San Clemente native was able to help save four of seven people who capsized off the coast of Catalina Island on Saturday, June 25. Three others died in the incident.
Kyung Hwan Kim, 49; Jason Jung Noh, 62; and Young Joon Park, 64, were the three people who died.
Two men were found uninjured but two others were taken to nearby hospitals in critical condition.
John “Spike” Ivins said the incident occurred near Salta Verde about 12 miles from Avalon.
“We were traveling east down the island, and the other boat was traveling west, and I noticed they were in a shallow area, (closer to the shore) than they should have been,” Ivins said. “Shortly thereafter, they were driving their boat near an exposed reef, and a wave grabbed them and turned the boat. We saw an inflatable skiff. He came over, and I jumped in, and we were able to pull two people out.”
Ivins said longtime Dana Point fishing boat captain Tod Mansur was able to spot two bodies through the debris in the water.
“I never thought I was in harm’s way,” Ivins said. “We were watching for swells and timing it, but I was just more wanting to get them out of there.”
Ivins is a San Clemente native and boat captain himself, commanding the Red Rooster 3 out of San Diego. He just happened to be a passenger on this fishing trip.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, LA Lifeguards and the U.S. Coast Guard all responded to the incident.
LASD officials said they are continuing their investigation into the matter.