Local News

Oct 6, 2010 1:38 AM by Ariel Wesler

Survivor of boating accident shares experience exclusively with KSBY

One of the survivors of this weekend's boating accident in Morro Bay shares his horrifying experience exclusively with KSBY. He was one of two people who managed to survive when their fishing boat capsized in the fog Saturday near Morro Bay Harbor. A third person was not so lucky.

Mike Ashworth of Arroyo Grande says he's alive tonight because of these guys.

"I get a picture of my kids in my mind and kept on fighting," Ashworth said.

The 35-year-old was onboard a fishing boat that capsized Saturday near the Morro Bay Harbor.

"I looked up and saw a wave and knew that we were in trouble," Ashworth said. "I flew into the roof of the cabin and into the windshield."

Wave after wave pounded him as he struggled beneath the boat. . .the undertoe dragging him down and farther out to sea.

"I was in the water swimming for a long time and it was tumbling us through the waves. There was a couple of times that I just gave up and said this is it. This is where I'm going to die," Ashworth said.

He was finally able to get onto the boat, catch a quick breath, and swim about a 1/4 mile to shore. This is cell phone video his cousin getting help from paramedics, but it's the image of his friend, who lost his life, that Ashworth says is etched in his memory.

"The other guy was yelling for help and there was nothing I could do," Ashworth said.

He was lucky enough to escape with a concussion and some bad bruises.

"I gave him a big hug and a kiss and said whatever you do, be safe out there. I just knew something was gonna happen. I could feel it," said Amy Ashworth, Mike's wife of 15 years.

An experienced fisherman, Ashworth says he'll take some time to recover before planning another trip.

"I just went fishing for the weekend," he said.

Between the heavy fog and problems with the GPS, the boat ended up in the wrong place. Ashworth says there were life vests onboard, but they weren't able to reach them in time.

Ashworth spent about eight hours in the hospital before being released. He says he hopes to return to return to work late this week or early next week.

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