About 30 members of the Harbor View Dads booster group were enjoying a harbor yacht cruise Wednesday evening when they found an upside-down kayak and two people and two dogs in the water.
“The dogs had life vests, the humans did not,” said Nik Froehlich, president of the group. “They were scared. It was dark, and you can’t just upright those canoes and climb back in.”
The incident occurred about 6:45 p.m.
The Harbor View Dads group, which included new principal Todd Schmidt, pulled alongside the stranded boaters and pulled them and the dogs to safety, Froehlich said. Then they helped upright the yellow kayak and helped them back on board.
“They were kind of in a pickle,” he said. “We got them on their way.”
J.R. Means, managing partner of Bayport Yachts, provided the group’s boat for the trip and said they first noticed a cooler and paddles floating in the water in the channel between the mainland and Little Balboa Island.
“We were starting to coast away from them, but it didn’t look right,” he said. “The man looked flushed and tired. And they weren’t really easily seen in the water.”
They backed up and pulled them aboard, and some Duffy boaters helped retrieve their paddles, Means said. The dogs and the kayakers spent about eight minutes aboard, he said.
The Harbor View Dads group is a non-profit group that holds monthly social events and raises money for the Harbor View Elementary School. The group recently funded an iPad program for sixth-graders, which is a pilot program for the Newport-Mesa Unified School District.
In January 2011, another boater rescued a dog that had fallen overboard outside the harbor entrance; read that story here.
Photos courtesy of Harbor View Dads.