Family of five rescued in kayaks near Fort Worden
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Bill Beezley/East Jefferson Fire-Rescue
The Marine 16 returns to Port Townsend with a father and his son who were being pushed away from shore by high winds on Monday afternoon.

Peninsula Daily News

PORT TOWNSEND — A family of five was rescued this week after strong currents and high winds pushed their kayaks far offshore of Point Wilson.

No one was hurt in the Monday afternoon incident, said Bill Beezley, East Jefferson Fire-Rescue Department spokesman.

He did not identify the family, citing privacy concerns, saying only that they had recently moved to the area from Florida and were planning to move into a house in Kingston.

Onlookers saw the kayakers, each in individual kayaks, in trouble and called 9-1-1 emergency dispatchers at about 4:45 p.m., Beezley said.

“They were pretty far offshore,” Beezley said. “They were being blown east by the wind and currents.”

Beezley gave this account:

East Jefferson Fire-Rescue Marine 16 was launched after emergency dispatchers received word.

The family by then had split into two groups: the father and his 8-year old son, and the mother and her older son and daughter.

While Marine 16 was on its way, a civilian vessel met the group of three.

The mother and older son, whose age was not available, declined help, but the daughter asked for aid, so the boaters picked her up with her kayak and dropped her off at Point Hudson.

When Marine 16 arrived off Point Wilson, the younger son, who was 8, had flipped over, lost his paddle and was unable to right his kayak.

The boy's father dragged him onto his kayak and held onto him until firefighters could bring him aboard.

Marine 16 delivered the father and younger son to the dock at the Port Townsend Marine Science Center at Fort Worden State Park, where medics evaluated and released them.

Marine 16 then eturned to the mother and older son, who by then had decided that they did need assistance.

Both were brought on board and taken to Point Wilson, uninjured.

Last modified: July 02. 2013 6:13PM
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