August 27th, 2020 – Islip Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter and Town Councilman John Cochrane, Jr. were joined by New York State Senator Phil Boyle and members of the US Coast Guard, at an award ceremony honoring the Fireball Ferry Captain and crew who last month, rescued 6 passengers from a sinking boat in the Great South Bay.
Captain Luke Kaufman and deckhands Anthony Celano and Kayla Brabender sprang into action after coming upon the vessel which had taken on water. Deckhand Kayla Brabender had just completed her training two days prior to the rescue.
"One of the most special parts of our incredible Town is Fire Island and our Fire Island ferries," said Islip Supervisor Angie Carpenter. "Families make cherished memories traveling to Fire Island each summer, and we are grateful to their crews for keeping ferry passengers and all those enjoying the water safe. To Dave Anderson and his incredible team, we thank you for what you do each and every day," added the Supervisor.
"We train for this all the time. I am glad that we could have been there at that particular moment, because I think had we not come upon that scene when we did, there probably would have been a different outcome," said Fireball Captain Luke Kaufman.
Kaufman added that it was merely a total of 15 minutes, from the time ferry personnel responded to the distressed passengers, and they were safely returned to shore by the US Coast Guard.