In photographer Frank Cavezza’s own words:
I noticed a father was calling out to his young daughter, beckening her to follow him out toward the ledge. After I took the second picture they ventured out even closer.
I walked over toward a lady, who was on the correct side of the fence taking their pictures. I said “You’re not from around here are you?” She said, “Oh no!” So I carefully explained to her that we have lost a number of people who ignored the warning signs and were swept away from the top of that very ledge your husband and daughter are standing on.”
The woman immediately shouted out to her husband and daughter to quickly retreat back behind the fence. I said, “Sorry that I bothered you but it’s very dangerous out there.” She replied with a big “THANK YOU” adding “It would be a terrible way to start the New Year – thank you very much.”
The three then met back up on the correct side of the fence no doubt giving thanks that they were still alive despite having gambled with the power of the thundering waves.
I’m so glad this story had a happy ending. I wish we could get the word out more so there would be no more loss of life and broken families caused by the ocean’s dramatic allure – with a beauty so grand and hypnotic that we’re drawn to death’s door without even realizing it.
Everyone who lives on the coast should stand together so when we notice unaware visitors doing crazy things we can at least call out to them to come back while there’s still time.
Editor’s Note: A young Hawaiian man, visiting Thor’s Well near Yachats last week got too close, was caught by a sneaker wave and swept off the rocks to his death. His body washed up on the beach at Bob Creek last Friday.