We were competing in the Rusty Hook Black Drum tournament and the weather wasn’t cooperating for the kayak. We changed plans and headed over to a known spot for drum. We weren’t there 5 minutes before my wife and the kids walked out onto the sidewalk/bulkhead and she fell and slid into the Galveston Ship Channel. When I looked over all I could see was the top of her head sticking up out of the water. She starting screaming for help. The kids started screaming. My son thought she was drowning so he made his little sister turn around so she wouldn’t have to see her mom die.
I am a veteran at both SeaWolf Park and the jetties. I know what to look for when it comes to algae covered objects but I didn’t even see what was about to occur next. I started running toward my wife when I too hit the algae covered sidewalk. Before I knew it, I was on the ground and sliding towards the water at full speed. Just as I was about to land on her a small object in the water caught me eye. Apparently it was old rusty re-bar left over from one of the hurricanes. I quickly placed my leading foot on the metal and it stopped my fall into the channel. During this nightmare two other fisherman ran to help us. They too ended on the ground at the mercy of the algae. Fortunately, I was able to stop them from going over. I say stopped. They actually just slid into me. I was able to find another piece of re-bar to place my foot so I could brace myself for the rescue. As the other fisherman held my shoulders I pulled withall I had. We finally got my wife out of the water.
That is when I first realized the extent of her injuries. I think she was still in shock. Blood was pouring out of a deep laceration on her leg, smaller cuts and abrasions covered her legs. She also had a puncture in her foot from the re-bar. As she feel she hit her head to an extent it caused swelling in the area. She was hurt more than I originally thought. Since I was a paramedic for years I assessed the injuries and wrapped a towel tightly around the the deep laceration to control the bleeding. I helped her into the truck, grabbed the kids and off to the ER we rushed. After several hours of x-rays and stitches she was finally released. Fortunately, it was nothing life threatening.
Unfortunately, my kids are traumatized over the whole incident and I don’t think they want to visit Seawolf Park anytime soon. My kids were walking right behind my wife. It was almost them and I am sure the outcome would have been much worse. A scary thing to think, when you visit a park for the day. Death is not something I use to think of when visiting Seawolf Park. The park board knows that rails need to placed in these “known” dangerous areas but it has not been done. When will it? When a child dies. If they cant make it safe for visitors it should shutdown until the proper safety designs are put into place. Everyday I think of what if that would have been my children that stepped into that sidewalk first.
On a lighter note, we didn’t win the tournament but of course we were busy diverting tragedy