‘Wicked Tuna’: Why One Series Star Was Honored by The American Red Cross

by Joe Rutland
(Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

Captains of tuna fish boats on “Wicked Tuna” have to keep their eyes open for any signs of danger. One captain did just that.

For his efforts, Tyler McLaughlin of the “Pinwheel” received an honor from the American Red Cross.

What happened? He saved someone’s life on those Atlantic Ocean waters. An article from Screenrant shares the information about what went down between “Wicked Tuna” episodes for McLaughlin.

So this happened back in 2014. “Miss Sambvca,” another fishing vessel, went down in the waters. McLaughlin made a beeline for their position. When he got out there, McLaughlin entered into rescue mode. He saved Dave Potter and Dennis Bonnazzoli from a sinking “Miss Sabvca.”

‘Wicked Tuna’ Fishing Boat Captain Acted Quickly in Rescue

McLaughlin then brought the two crew members to shore, where they received medical help. For his efforts, McLaughlin was awarded the American Red Cross’s First Responder Award. In 2015, he was named a 2015 Hero of the Red Cross.

Why? Because of the “Wicked Tuna” captain’s quick thinking and actions, two men facing death were rescued.

Heroes come in many different forms for people in need. Tyler McLaughlin just did something that gives others in need a dash of hope.

He and the “Pinwheel” are still on “Wicked Tuna” after 10 seasons on the National Geographic Channel. The show just finished airing 20 episodes in July 2021.

Dave Marciano Explained How Original Fishing Boat Sank

Speaking of fishing boats in trouble, fellow “Wicked Tuna” captain had to face the future without his original fishing boat.

Dave Marciano talked about losing the “Angelica Joseph” in a 2012 interview with TV Tango. It sank just off Thacher

Wicked Tuna star Dave Marciano knows a bit about the hardships of commercial fishing; in 2004, Marciano’s original boat, a 28-year-old wooden vessel, sank near Thatcher Island in Rockport, Mass.

Marciano and his crew were cleaning its deck. Then they heard the high water alarm sounded, according to the Salem Evening News. The “Angelica Joseph” was about 20 miles from home, coming back after a day of fishing.

The captain said, “We opened up a butt plank and a butt block let go.”

What is a butt block? It’s a way of fastening planks together while building a wooden boat. It fastens by wood screws to overlapping planks that will connect them. Marciano said that he replaced all butt blocks before a new fishing season.

“There were two butt blocks that I could never just access, the way the boat was constructed,” he said. “The area where I was taking on water was roughly in that area.”

Thankfully, he and the crew were rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard. Marciano now runs “Hard Merchandise” to do his fishing work.