Please select your home edition
Edition
Bakewell-White Yacht Design

Hall family to be awarded Hanson Rescue Medal for Golden Gate rescue

by Jake Fish on 28 Jun 2013
.
US Sailing will award a Hanson Rescue Medal to sailors Merle Hall (Walnut Creek, Calif.), his son Eric Hall (Alamo, Calif.) and grandsons Henry and Ethan Hall (Alamo, Calif.) for rescuing a woman on San Francisco Bay who was afloat beneath the Golden Gate Bridge in the early morning of April 17, 2011.

The Halls were sailing out of San Francisco Bay under reefed sails in a chartered 36-foot Beneteau 373 sloop. As they approached the bridge, 14-year-old Ethan saw a splash in the water about 300 yards ahead. Thinking it might be a whale spout, the family sailed in closer as they noticed pedestrians on the bridge approximately 245 feet overhead pointing down to the water. The Halls sailed toward the area until a police boat appeared, racing toward a plume of smoke from a flare near what appeared to be a body. The search had apparently become an obligation to recover this body in the water. As the boat turned toward the victim, the Halls heard sounds from the person floating in the water, who turned out to be a teenage girl.

'We knew we wanted to get hold of the jumper and stabilize her in the water so she wouldn’t drown before the coast guard arrived,' explained Merle. 'Once we got hold of her, we stopped the boat and kept her afloat, but also very still so we didn’t hurt her. This is not your typical man-overboard procedure.'

With Ethan serving as spotter, Merle brought the boat’s Lifesling rescue device on deck and Eric threw a horseshoe life ring in the water, which blew away. After deciding that the Lifesling would not work with a helpless victim, the Halls started the engine, dropped the sails, and motored to the victim. Eric stood on the stern boarding platform and reached out to the victim with a boat hook and pulled her to the boat. They were concerned about causing further damage to the young woman by trying to pull her on board. Merle went below and called the Coast Guard, 15-year-old Henry steered the boat into the wind. While Eric held the girl’s head above water, Ethan held the boathook, keeping the half-drowned, unconscious woman close by but safely away from the turning propeller. When Merle reported that a Coast Guard boat was on the way, Ethan prepared to signal with the boat’s emergency flares.

The Coast Guard boat soon appeared out of a group of several boats looking for the girl at the north end of the bridge. The Coast Guard took the girl on board, and raced to Sausalito, where she was sent to Marin General Hospital. The girl, a 16-year-old from Los Angeles, survived the fall from the Golden Gate Bridge.

The Arthur B. Hanson Rescue Medal is awarded by US Sailing’s Safety-at-Sea Committee to any person who rescues or endeavors to rescue any other person from drowning, shipwreck, or other perils at sea within the territorial waters of the United States, or as part of a sailboat race or voyage that originated or stopped in the U.S. Since it was established in 1990 by friends of the late Mr. Hanson, an ocean-racing sailor from the Chesapeake Bay, the Arthur B. Hanson Rescue Medal has been presented to more than 170 boats. Any individual or organization may submit a nomination for a Hanson Rescue Medal. US Sailing website
Barz Optics - San Juan Worlds Best EyewearBakewell-White Yacht DesignNaiad/Oracle Supplier

Related Articles

New Xperformance - Optimising the cruiser/racer range from X-Yachts
X-Yachts have built a wide range of 'Cruiser/Racers' as well as dedicated racing yachts which have won many Intl titles Since the company was founded back in 1979, X-Yachts have built a wide range of 'Cruiser/Racers' as well as dedicated racing yachts which have won many famous International titles, and of course One Design Class yachts such as X-79 and X-99
Posted on 14 Feb
World Sailing unites Kiteboarding governing bodies
World Sailing has today signed a landmark agreement with the IKA and the GKA to unite the kiteboarding community World Sailing has today signed a landmark agreement with the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) and the Global Kitesports Association (GKA) to unite the kiteboarding community and provide clarity of kiteboarding's governance structure.
Posted on 13 Feb
On board interview with Lisa Blair - solo Antartica circumnavigation
So far, Lisa is tracking very well in her attempt to become the first woman to sail solo around Antartica. So far, Lisa is tracking very well in her attempt to become the first woman to sail solo around Antartica. After the setbacks of a delayed departure due to gremlins in the electronics, we are delighted to have these answers from her on board. She is well and enjoying her time. Climate Action Now, her Hick 50, left Albany in Western Australia on January 22, 2017.
Posted on 8 Feb
The price of legacy
Malcolm Page OAM, two-time Olympic Gold Medallist, became the Chief of Olympic Sailing for the USA on January 1 Malcolm Page OAM, two-time Olympic Gold Medallist (470) with Nathan Wilmot in 2008 and Mat Belcher in 2012, became the Chief of Olympic Sailing for the USA on January 1 this year. In and of itself it is hardly the freshest news, and well and truly yesterday’s fish wrapper. It was also a wise choice on behalf of Team USA, for he has succeeded in both the physical and commercial arms of our sport.
Posted on 5 Feb
Zhik becomes Official Clothing Partner to the Extreme Sailing Series
Extreme Sailing Series™ has established an exciting new partnership with the high-performance clothing brand, Zhik. As it enters the 2017 season, the Extreme Sailing Series™ has established an exciting new partnership with the high-performance clothing brand, Zhik.
Posted on 2 Feb
World Sailing headquarters to relocate to London
World Sailing's headquarters will relocate from Southampton to central London, UK in late summer 2017. World Sailing's headquarters will relocate from Southampton to central London, UK in late summer 2017. The selection of London as the new home for the International Federation comes after an extensive evaluation process of possible locations undertaken since the election of a new President and Board of Directors in November 2016.
Posted on 1 Feb
Henri Lloyd join forces with FAST40+ Class
Henri Lloyd is delighted to announce their three year partnership with the FAST40+ Class. Premium British marine and lifestyle clothing brand, Henri Lloyd is delighted to announce their three year partnership with the FAST40+ Class.
Posted on 1 Feb
Tawera takes the NZ Millennium Cup 2017
The Ron Holland designed and impeccably sailed, Tawera, again dominated a lengthier 27nm course on Day 3 of racing The Ron Holland designed and impeccably sailed, Tawera, again dominated a lengthier 27nm course on Day 3 of racing, taking line honours for a third consecutive day, bringing home the NZ Millennium Cup 2017. Coming into the final day of racing, Pacific Division competitors, Antaeus and Steinlager 2, were tied on points. Rumours of an extensive tactical defence strategy to retain the Pacific
Posted on 1 Feb
Rolex China Sea Race launches new official website
RHKYC today unveiled its new official website and logo for its flagship event, the biennial Rolex China Sea Race Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club today unveiled its new official website and logo for its flagship event, the biennial Rolex China Sea Race - Asia’s principal blue-water classic.
Posted on 28 Jan
Bavaria C57 - Something big has arrived
At the boot 2017 in Düsseldorf, Bavaria Yachts presented the new flagship of their sailing yachts' fleet. At the boot 2017 in Düsseldorf, Bavaria Yachts presented the new flagship of their sailing yachts' fleet. The Bavaria C57 does not only convince with a new modern design but also with many new innovative details.
Posted on 24 Jan