Like many in the community I am filled with deep sadness over the tragic deaths of the 34 souls lost on the vessel Conception in almost unimaginable circumstances.

As a longtime member of our diving community who has been on the Conception, my sorrow is made more poignant by the belief that those who perished did so while driven by a shared love of the exquisite beauty surrounding our Channel Islands.

Also, as a former member of the Ventura County Sheriff’s Search & Rescue Dive Team with experience in such efforts, my grief is coupled with a personal knowledge and keen appreciation of the difficult nature of these efforts. This is physically demanding and emotionally draining but important work.

These recovery divers are both searching for clues to this tragedy as well as bringing some closure to the friends and families of the victims and survivors.

Along with others, I share a tremendous desire to understand how this horrific accident occurred.

We will of course, have to await the results and findings of the investigations to answer that question. I hope that we will then be in a position to use that knowledge to implement any changes necessary for the continued safe explorations of our incredible ocean environment.

We need to do our upmost to ensure continued appreciation of our ocean and, hopefully our shared responsibility in preserving this vital and wondrous ecosystem for future generations.

It is in that way, ultimately, that we honor these victims.


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