Coast Guard officials save 8 kayakersUPDATED 8:20 PM HST Aug 04, 2014Video Transcript
4 teenagers and 4 adults are lucky to be alive after their 21- foot vessel sank in the treacherous waters of Kaiwi Channel yesterday. KITV4's Pamela Young reports the boat started taking on water 12 miles west of Moloka'i. Here's the dramatic video... It's our top story tonight at 6-30. Pounding swells overwhelmed the bilge pump of the vessel Blue Dream. The crew, all teens, knew immediately what was happening. I CUT OFF ALL THE KAYAKS AND GRABBED AS MANY DRY BAGS AS I COULD. MY FRIEND WENT ON THE VHF AND PRESSED THE DISTRESS BUTTON. HE ALSO VERBALLY SAID WE'RE GOING DOWN. 15 year old Mark Henry and friends Tomas, Francesco, Manoa are experienced watermen who earn summer money by taking divers and canoers across the channel. On this day they were escorting 4 adult kayakers. WE'RE APPROXIMATELY 12 MILES OFF MOLOKAI AND WE HAVE PADDLERS. After 2 hours, off to the horizon, a welcome sight. WE'RE BEING RESCUED! A diver jumps in the high swells and makes his way to the kayaks. The Coast Guard helicopter drops the rescue basket and 13 year old Tomas is told to hop on. THE YOUNGER BOY HAD A HARD TIME GETTING INTO THE CAGE AND SO MY SON HAD TO PULL HIM IN BECAUSE HE WAS A BIT SHAKEN BY THE WHOLE ORDEAL. Coast Guard officials say the teenagers were prepared, equipping the boat with lifejackets, a VHF radio and EPERB, an Emergency Beacon that automatically activates under water. To the anxious parents waiting at Sandy's the credit goes to the rescuers. MY GRATITUDE FOR THOSE GUYS GO OUT THERE. THEY PUT THEIR LIVES ON THE LINE. I HAVE MY SON TODAY BECAUSE OF THEM AND I'M ETERNALLY GRATEFUL AND I CAN'T THANK THOSE BRAVE MEN AND WOMEN ENOUGH Pamela young, KITV4N. The Coast Guard sent a helicopter out today to locate and assess the damage of the Blue Dream, which should be floating just below the surface of the water. Saint Louis freshman Mark Henry Reeves says the experience has inspired him to seek a a career with Coast Guard.