Kauai nears drowning record - News

Kauai nears drowning record - News

There are 8 comments on the Honolulu Star-Bulletin story from Oct 14, 2008, titled Kauai nears drowning record - News. In it, Honolulu Star-Bulletin reports that:

PRINCEVILLE, Kauai>> Four people apparently drowned in high surf Sunday and yesterday on Kauai, which is on the way to setting a new record for drownings this year, says a water safety expert.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Honolulu Star-Bulletin.


Wailuku, HI

#1 Oct 14, 2008
Global websites have proliferated showing our islands' mystery trails to hidden beaches. Some trails show routes through dangerous mountainous terrain.

So people come to Hawaii as if they are going to a safe Disneyland where everything should be safe in Paradise.

Locals (ask opihi pickers) and tourists both turn their back on nature and get swallowed up.

Irresponsible websites and irresponsible people; a bad combination.

Wailuku, HI

#3 Oct 14, 2008
Mahu wrote:
As long haoles are the victims, we are cool with it.
What a rotten absolutely stupid thing to say. Did your parents have any children who lived?

Honolulu, HI

#4 Oct 14, 2008
Mahu wrote:
As long haoles are the victims, we are cool with it.
Much appreciate your honesty it's the closet racists that bother me. From now on, we know the value of anything that comes out of you mouth.
A Fish Out of H2O


#5 Oct 14, 2008
Very sad!!!!!!!!
Char Siu Bao Girl


#6 Oct 14, 2008
May they all rest in peace!!!!!!!!

Kaneohe, HI

#7 Oct 14, 2008
Mahu wrote:
As long haoles are the victims, we are cool with it.
To think I once had respect for your opinions. Go stuff yourself, freak.
fran cobb


#8 Oct 15, 2008
part 1 - i was at queen's bath on the north shore of kauai on 10/12/08 - sunday (the day the 2 ladies were swept out into the ocean). my family is devastated to say the least, as i know these families are devastated beyond measure. we are truly just sick to our stomachs and still are. we were on the island for our annual 3-week vacation with our 6 little ones. we had been told by a local that afternoon (while having a picnic lunch at a local princeville park), that there may be some high surf on the north shore, but had decided to do a "repeat" of this adventure spot. had been there the week previous and had a perfect afternoon - the seas were calm. we arrived to see that the "bath" was completely gone - covered by the raging ocean. it was awesome to watch. we travel to kauai often and know about the large surf, power of the ocean, we're good swimmers, etc. we never turn our back on the sea. we were staying back a "safe" distance from the edge. we had asked another couple to take some pics of our family for our annual Christmas card picture. the spray/waves crashing on the cliffs/rocks was incredible. the gigantic swells came in groups of 3-4 with about 10 minutes of calm in between. we had noticed a large group of people had just arrived and were standing somewhat close to the edge. we had just taken a few pics of the incredible scenes and that's when it happened. it started slowly, a panic, a shriek, word that someone had just been pulled in by a monster of a wave. the group of people were probably 40 ft from us. my husband tried to make his way over as quickly as possible (it's solid large, rough rock/coral boulders)- no sandy beach. just a sheer drop off into the raging ocean below. the screams were getting louder and we understood what no one wanted to ever hear or realize - that someone was in. the family/bystanders were hollering to anyone within ear distance to call 911. the reception is poor there - remote, mountainous, north shore. several people attempted, calls were disconnected. finally, my husband's call got through and he made the first report of the accident. the waves were pounding (we really only knew of one lady down, but later learned it had been two). i believe the husband of one lady attempted to lower himself in to save them. he was badly injured by the assault of the waves and the rough, jagged rocks. he was no match for the omni powerful pacific. my husband began to take off his backpack and talk of going in to the water to help. he couldn't imagine that no one was in there swimming out to save her. my 6 kiddos and i just began to plead and cry and begged him not to go. it was suicide to go in i told him. upon being dragged into the sea, i would assume she had hit her head and was unconscious and unable to swim. why else wasn't she swimming? why wasn't she swimming out away from the rocks instead of being crashed repeatedly upon them with tons of foamy salt water? did she know how to swim? how could the husband not have retrieved her? grabbed her? found her? was she not visible? the ocean was no match for a woman or a man or Hercules that day. when she was spotted, she was floating face down far away from the cliff and drifting out to sea. the firefighters arrived on foot soon thereafter down from the parking lot path (approx 15 minutes), it felt like an eternity. they bravely entered the water with fins and floatation devices. we couldn't believe they were actually going in "the wild animal" that is the ocean. where was the coast guard helicopter? couldn't they lower down a navy seal from a copter or something? my husband was taking on the responsibility of watching the woman's faraway lifeless body floating about the swells. to keep one's eye on her was difficult. this image is etched on his retinas with each blink or quiet moment.
fran cobb


#9 Oct 15, 2008
part 2 - should i have let him go in? was i filled with selfish fear for myself and children instead of concern for that woman and her children (they could be heard calling out, screaming to their mother). i would assume the victim's mother was the other lady on scene that was in obvious and utter and expected hysteria. it was just the most terrifying thing to have witnessed. the husband's legs were bloodied and gashed from his attempt at rescue. should he have sacrificed his life to save his wife and sister-in-law? his children would then have had no parents. it was a no win situation to be sure. i prayed with my children (for the families involved and that somehow, some way, the woman would be found alive out there floating and was just hanging on for help and rescue.....) and took my children away from this mortifying scene and up the steep, wet, dirt path. my husband stayed on site, as he was the contact # with the 911 dispatch and came up to join us in the parking lot about 30 minutes later. he learned that there were two victims in the water after the firefighters arrived on scene. he watched the fire captain hug the husband and say he was sorry and that his wife was not alive when retrieved via lifeguard sea-doo. she was about 500 yards from the place she fell in when finally retrieved from the abyss. the other lady was further out and rescued next. our scheduled departure from the island was today. we spoke of the disaster on the long, painful drive home to the south shore. long periods of silence, then more questions from the children. then silence, then anger, then wondering why? the ocean is unpredictable and stronger than one can imagine. it should be noted that at the exact time that this double disaster was occurring, two other adults (husband & wife) were knocked down right nearby us (at queen's bath too)(they thankfully were more inland on the rocks and only in about waist deep water after the wave struck them.) the first two ladies had no where else to go but down as they were close to the edge (probably at least a 30 foot drop i would imagine - onto sharp rock and open ocean....) i saw the man brace himself and grab onto a boulder for his life. his wife had been swept behind him and he was trying to also keep her from being pulled out by the mighty force of seawater. they were able to walk away (she had cuts on her leg) from queen's bath that day. terribly shaken naturally. knowing they had been spared. so i say this as a warning to be cautious, very cautious. never, never underestimate the power of the ocean. be alert. my husband and i have a new sense of appreciation and love for one another. these couples will never again hold one another's hands, each other, the mothers will never see their children smile...can you imagine resuming a vacation after this most horrific event? can you imagine resuming life? i pray that the victims were believers and are in heaven and that their loved ones are able to find a shred of peace and comfort in the Lord. we, just being bystanders, will forever be changed. our hearts are heavy. i don't ever want to return to queen's bath again. i pray for these families left without their wives, mommies, sisters, daughters, aunties, neices. thank you for letting me share this tragedy through my eyes and heart.

fran cobb
upland, ca 91786
[email protected]
have been visiting and loving kauai since our honeymoon there 23 years ago

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