Thank you, U.S. Coast Guard. I was one of the 135 people needing assistance on Lake Erie February 7th, 2009. I was very impressed with how professionally you assessed the situation and calmly assisted the fishermen off the ice floe.
The issue no one seems to mention is the Sheriff of Ottawa County, Bob Bratton.
He showed our national and local news media how out of control he was calling myself and about 500 to 1,000 other sportsmen idiots and stupid for going out on the ice.
If Sheriff Bob was so intelligent, why did he not place sheriff deputies at the points of entry to warn people that he knew the ice was going to shift that day.
As for fines for assisting people, let's look at that. How much do we fine disabled motorists on the side of the road? How much do we fine boaters on Lake Erie in the summer who are in distress? How much do we fine flood victims who choose to live along our rivers and lakes? Why should ice fishermen be singled out if they need assistance?
I think Sheriff Bratton needed to go out on the ice and chill out a little before referring to tax payers, sportsmen and people enjoying nature as idiots and stupid and focus on protecting and serving.
Thank you again, U.S. Coast Guard.