Man rescued by Coast Guard needed in ‘Goonies’ fish incident


“It’s been a really odd 48 hours,” Astoria Police Chief Stacy Kelly mentioned.

In this picture offered by the U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Northwest, a Coast Guard rescue swimmer reaches a ship proper earlier than an enormous wave rolled the craft on the mouth of the Columbia River in Oregon on Friday, Feb. 3, 2023. The newly minted Coast Guard rescue swimmer saved the lifetime of a person who was piloting the yacht. AET1 Kyle Turcotte/U.S Coast Guard Pacific Northwest through AP

SEATTLE (AP) — A person who was saved by a Coast Guard rescue swimmer on the mouth of the Columbia River as an enormous wave rolled the yacht he was piloting Friday was needed for a weird incident through which police mentioned he left a useless fish on the Astoria, Oregon, residence featured within the traditional 1985 movie, “The Goonies.”

Officers had been searching for the person since Wednesday, when an acquaintance alerted them to a video he posted on social media of himself leaving the fish on the home after which dancing across the property, Astoria Police Chief Stacy Kelly mentioned.

Kelly recognized the person as Jericho Labonte, 35, of Victoria, British Columbia. Labonte can also be needed in British Columbia on prison harassment, mischief, and failure to conform instances from final fall, Kelly mentioned.

Early Friday afternoon, the Coast Guard shared beautiful video of a rescue made a couple of hours earlier through which a newly minted rescue swimmer lowered by cable from a helicopter swam to a 35-foot (11-meter) yacht that was struggling in heavy surf. As the swimmer approached the vessel, a big wave slammed into it, rolling the boat over and throwing a person, later recognized as Labonte, into the water.

The swimmer, Petty Officer 1st Class Branch Walton, of Greenville, South Carolina, reached Labonte and pulled him to security. The helicopter crew flew him to Coast Guard Base Astoria, the place medics handled him for gentle hypothermia and transported him to a hospital.

The yacht’s proprietor, who lives in close by Warrenton, Oregon, reported the vessel stolen later Friday, the police chief mentioned.

The hospital had already launched Labonte when police noticed the Coast Guard images and video and realized it was the identical one who they mentioned lined over safety cameras on the Goonies home and left the useless fish on the porch.

The home featured within the Steven Spielberg movie “The Goonies” is seen in Astoria, Ore., May 24, 2001. A person who was saved by a Coast Guard rescue swimmer on the mouth of the Columbia River on Friday, Feb. 3, 2023, as an enormous wave overturned the yacht he was piloting turned out to be needed by police for a weird incident through which he allegedly left a useless fish on the Astoria residence. (AP Photo/Stepanie Firth, File)

Police had been nonetheless searching for Labonte Friday night.

Kelly didn’t know what sort of fish it was, however mentioned police believed it was caught domestically as a result of after the video began circulating, one other particular person reported having taken Labonte fishing.

“It’s been a really odd 48 hours,” Kelly mentioned.

The mouth of the Columbia, the biggest North American river flowing into the Pacific Ocean, is called “the graveyard of the Pacific” for its notoriously tough seas. The Coast Guard obtained the yacht’s mayday name round 10 a.m. Friday whereas conducting trainings close by, Petty Officer Michael Clark mentioned.

The mayday contained no details about the situation or the precise downside, however the company roughly triangulated the vessel’s location, and close by boat crews and a helicopter responded.

They discovered the P/C Sandpiper yacht taking over water in 20-foot (6-meter) seas, which means the peak of a wave from the earlier trough could possibly be as a lot as 40 ft (12 meters), Clark mentioned.

Walton, who solely lately graduated from the Coast Guard’s rescue swimmer program, was lowered from the helicopter by a cable. Labonte climbed onto the strict and ready to enter the water simply as an enormous wave slammed the craft, throwing him into the surf. The wave struck so violently that the vessel rolled utterly over and wound up floating upright.

Walton mentioned in an interview Friday that he deliberate to achieve the person, get him within the water, and hook him to a cable hooked up to the helicopter. Instead, the wave hit.

“I kind of got thrown around a little bit by the wave. When I came up, I noticed the boat was pretty much in shambles,” Walton mentioned.

He directed the helicopter to deliver him to Labonte after recognizing him within the surf a brief distance away. The power of the wave had largely knocked off his life jacket, Walton mentioned.

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