------From Anna Beckwith:
This week marks a decade since we splashed the Dragin Fly.
It has been an incredible ride…sometimes nerve racking but also incredibly
satisfying to see what we have all built together.
I first met Captain James in 2007 while the Dragin Fly was
being built. I was 30 years old and had little idea of what was coming around
the corner. We had frank and honest discussion about who we were and what we
were trying to accomplish and I remember asking James to treat the Dragin Fly
as if she was his. My hopes and
expectation were not only met but they were surpassed over and over again. When
the great recession hit during our first season and the pressure felt
overwhelming Capt James stood beside us as a true partner and helped establish
the Dragin Fly as a superb charter boat. James’s professionalism and friendship
where instrumental in making it all work out.
Berto our first mate and alternate Captain has also been
with us since the beginning. His compulsion for perfection has kept the Dragin
Fly and her equipment looking brand new from day one to today. I have often sympathized with Berto that he
has the hardest job on the boat. As first mate he is responsible for the care
and maintenance of the equipment, he trains our second mates (which typically
go on to be first mate on other vessels due to their excellent experience), and
as alternate Captain he also has to fill some big shoes and does it very well. He also continues to help me improve my
sailfish hooking skills (a job forever in process).
Their wives and children have also been an integral part of
the team giving James and Berto the support they need to work as hard as they
do. Jacqueline’s and Glenda’s efforts deserve independent recognition!
In general I tend to be a shadow in the background Dragin
Fly operations. I am involved in almost every aspect but George tends to be the
face where the two of us are concerned. While the last ten years seem to have
gone by in a flash one thing is clear, James and Berto are not our employees,
they are our partners, our friends and a significant part of our family. I want
to clearly express to them and their families that their efforts and
contributions are immense and central to the success of the Dragin Fly and that
my respect and affection for them is heartfelt and deep.
I am also thankful for the ten years of community that we
have found here at Los Suenos Marina. The people we have met and have the good
fortune to call friends and the facilities have made this experience all the
I can honestly say that George brought (dragged) me into
this with significant reservations, helped calm me down during plenty of
stressful moments and was at the ready with a glass of Champaign when we
realized that the light at the end of the tunnel was NOT A TRAIN. I am
extremely proud of what we have all built together and hope that all involved
know how thankful I am to have them in my life.