Coast Guard, Good Samaritans rescue 2 after boat capsizes off New Jersey

September 24, 2013 6:54:06 PM PDT
Two men are recovering after they were rescued from the ocean when their boat capsized off the New Jersey shore.

A Coast Guard petty officer captured images of a commercial fishing boat that had raced to a capsized private boat with two brothers on board. The captain had heard the distress call on the radio.

"The man said, 'Mayday, mayday,' he was frantic and the boat capsized,'" said Petty Officer Andrew Groth, of the U.S. Coast Guard.

Petty Officers Corey Renninger and Andrew Groth were on one of two Coast Guard boats to get to the brothers, eight miles offshore, in a 31 foot boat that could not match Mother Nature Monday morning.

"He took on waves, three to four foot seas, the wind turned them over," Groth said.

The crew of a fishing boat out of Brielle, much like this one, had pulled one brother up by the time the Coast Guard arrived.

"The other guy was struggling to climb, he was exhausted, we got him on board the boat," said Petty Officer Corey Renninger, of the U.S. Coast Guard.

The brothers are lucky. Help arrived quickly, because, the Coast Guard says, they had no life vests, and could only hold on to their craft, until it sunk. They visited the station Tuesday to thank the crew there.

"This was my second rescue, it's humbling," Renninger said.

"Not much better feeling than saving a life," Groth said, "Having and knowing how to properly use a radio saved their lives," Groth said. "Always wear a life jacket, and have life rings readily available for worst case scenarios."

Both rescued boaters were "wet and cold," but neither man was injured.

One of the Coast Guard boat became disabled during the rescue after a small fire broke out on board.

CLICK HERE to see Coast Guard video of the rescue.