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WEEKEND #10, 2012

Rehoboth Beach, Delaware




The Coast Guard and DNREC are investigating a diving incident that has left a man fighting for his life.

The call for help was received around 3:20 p.m. Saturday reporting that a man was in cardiac arrest.

Boatswain's Mate 2nd Class Joshua Talys, from Coast Guard Station Indian River Inlet, said the Coast Guard had received a call from Rehoboth Beach 9-1-1 reporting that the boat was headed to the Coast Guard pier with a man in cardiac arrest

Talys said when the boat arrived, the occupants of the vessel had been performing CPR on the man. They were assisted by Coast Guard personnel. Talys said the victim had been diving at an area known as "site 10," about five or six miles from the inlet.

Robert Stuart, Sussex County EMS director, says the 52-year-old man had reportedly been diving a shipwreck about 60 feet beneath the surface. According to witness reports, he surfaced, was conscious, talking, not feeling well and then collapsed in cardiac arrest.

One witness fishing at the inlet said several men, who appeared to be Amish or Mennonites, had been helping with rescue efforts on the boat, but it was unclear what affiliation they had with the victim.

The victim was pulse-less when EMS personnel reached him. Stuart says the man had several episodes where he intermittently regained a pulse, only to lapse in cardiac arrest again. As of Sunday evening, the man's current condition has not been released.



This past week, beach visitors have been noticing a long stretch of black sand along the upper edge of the surf in Rehoboth Beach, particularly after the minor nor'easter that came through last week.

Wendy Carey, Delaware Sea Grant College Program of the University of Delaware, says "the concentrated black sands are typically lag deposits of what's known as 'heavy minerals' -- those with a higher specific gravity than lighter minerals such as quartz and feldspar."

The higher specific gravity requires higher energy for transport, she said. "Therefore the heavy grains may be moved by high waves and strong currents, but are left behind in a concentrated layer when normal surf conditions return."

Along Delaware's shoreline, she said the dark sands typically consist of heavy iron-rich minerals such as magnetite and ilmenite. Carey added that garnet, tourmaline and hornblende are other minerals commonly found in the dark sand mix.

According to DNREC public affairs, a DNREC scientist this past week went to the area where these photos were taken to verify the condition of the beach. She noted that "The heavy minerals (as described by Ms. Carey) are still present," while reaffirming "There is no oil anywhere, and the naturally-occurring heavy minerals in the sand do not pose any issues for people or the environment."

Carey says for more information, check the FAQ section of the Delaware Sea Grant coastal processes website.



After last week's report on the trimming of the panic grass in the dunes in the area of the Henlopen Hotel, we asked DNREC what should a property owner do to obtain permission to trim the dune grass?

Maria Sadler, program manager for DNREC's Shoreline and Waterway Management Section, responded: "We do not normally give individuals or businesses approval to trim vegetation in the dunes with the exception of private communities where we have allowed property owners to trim trees on their property."

"The dune and beach grass are protected and we do everything possible to keep people out of the dune," she said. "However, in June of 2011, I was contacted by some individuals from the Rehoboth community who were upset about the trash and dead vegetation that had begun to accumulate on the back side of the dune along the boardwalk and especially in the area of the panic grass. It did look bad. They were also upset with the height of the panic grass since they could no longer see the ocean from the boardwalk. They requested approval to clean up the area and trim the panic grass. My first response was that they would not be able to trim the panic grass but that I could work with them regarding removal of trash and vegetation. We continued to discuss the issue and I did some research with the Plant Materials Center out of New Jersey where I learned that trimming of the panic grass can be done, providing that it is no shorter than one foot to prevent mortality."

"After many e-mails back and forth," Sadler stated, "I agreed to allow the group (five to six people) to meet one day in April where I supervised them cleaning up trash and dead vegetation from the landward side of the dune. I required that they only work in the area on the landward side of the panic grass (the two to three foot area between the boardwalk and the grass). I also allowed them to trim the panic grass to approximately 2.5 feet minimum (most of it was the dead vegetation from last season). The activity covered the area from approximately Laurel Street to Maryland Avenue and no beach grass was disturbed or removed. There had been plans to complete the rest of the northern section of the boardwalk but it was not done at that time."

"Recently, we worked with an employee from Stuart Kingston Gallery to finish up the area in front of the gallery," she added.

"This cleanup/trimming is not scheduled as an ongoing event. I let the group know up front that this was a onetime thing that could possibly be revisited in the future, but that it would only be permitted with our approval and under our supervision to ensure that there is no disturbance or damage to the dune or the vegetation. If it is ever allowed in the future it will only be in the late winter or early spring when the vegetation is dormant."

Last Saturday we also sought comment from Stuart Kingston which provided this e-mail message on Monday: "Our only comments are that at Stuart Kingston we did our research and had permission from DNREC. We also would like to say the photograph you took is from an outsiders' view from the beach looking to the boardwalk, this shows dune grass which is not the same as panic grass. From the boardwalk looking out is how we see the beach. The photo shows the dune grass which we did not and cannot touch. We simply like to see the beach. Panic grass at full age and maturity can reach heights of five feet which would eliminate over 50 percent of what we see. This grass grows at a pretty fast rate so we plan on continuing to prune it down to the regulation height of two feet with DNREC supervision."




For nearly two hours DNREC marine police, firefighters and the Coast Guard assisted Dewey Beach police searching the Rehoboth Bay for a missing 50-year-old man. Firefighters from Rehoboth Beach, Indian River and Bethany Beach responded to assist, along with Sussex County paramedics.

It all began around 10:35 p.m., when police received a call from the man's wife who said he entered the Rehoboth Bay in the area of the Que Pasa Restaurant near Van Dyke Avenue. The man reportedly was distraught over a situation with the couple's kids and walked into the bay wearing only shorts and disappeared. Several reports suggested he was intoxicated. He was also reported to be a college professor.

The rescuers searched along the bay on land and well into the bay using boats. Helicopters were unavailable because of poor visibility.

At 12:18 a.m., the man suddenly was spotted coming out of the water near where he was last seen. Sgt. Clifford Dempsey, police spokesman, said they suspect he was hiding somewhere along the docks when they searched for him. He said they covered the open water extensively, even using parachute flares fired by the Coast Guard. Had he been swimming the bay, they probably would have spotted him.

Sgt. Dempsey said the man was taken to Beebe Hospital for a mental evaluation. He probably will not face any charges.



Volunteers from the MERR Institute investigated another dead sea turtle Sunday evening.

Bystanders helped bring the remains ashore under the supervision of Dewey Beach police at McKean Avenue in Indian Beach around 7:20 p.m.

The remains appear to be that of a loggerhead, but we await official word from Suzanne Thurman, MERR's executive director.

Both of the turtle's flippers were previously tagged. One tag appeared to read XXL687. Thurman says it is "always interesting to get a tagged turtle." She said she will report the tags to the appropriate researcher and hopefully get some feedback. She noted that sometimes females are tagged on nesting beaches.




Late Saturday afternoon, this section of corrugated pipe, roughly 30 feet by three feet, got the attention of beach visitors. The Coast Guard, state police helicopter and Rehoboth Beach police were investigating.

Boatswain's Mate 2nd Class Joshua Talys, from Coast Guard Station Indian River Inlet, said the Coast Guard was aware of the drifting pipe and it was too large for the Coast Guard vessel to tow.

Around 4:30 p.m., it was about a half mile southeast of the Henlopen Hotel. It continued to drift northward through the evening.



CAMP Rehoboth's Steve Elkins joined Charlie Browne, president of the Rehoboth Beach Homeowners' Association, welcoming the three candidates for two Rehoboth Beach commissioner seats during Friday evening's forum.

Perhaps the Olympic opening ceremonies impacted turnout. Only about 40 people attended.

For more details, see WGMD's Andrew Koch's Web article.



With 12 days left before the city's next municipal election, campaign signs have been mushrooming in Rehoboth Beach. Here is a look at the signs in front of homes of the town's elected officials and/or candidates for commissioner.

Commissioner Pat Coluzzi (Gossett, Sargent and Sharp signs)

Mayor Sam Cooper (Gossett and Sargent signs)

Commissioner Patrick Gossett (Gossett sign only)

Commissioner Mark Hunker (Gossett and Sharp signs)

Commissioner Stan Mills (no signs)

Commissioner Bill Sargent (Sargent sign only)

Commissioner Candidate Toni Sharp (Sharp sign only)

Commissioner Lorraine Zellers (Gossett and Sargent signs)



Affordable art for challenging economic times

by Dagmar Henney

Houston Llew has returned to Rehoboth Beach with his colorful collections of precious Spiritiles -- a glass on copper collection of small art treasures. Each tile tells a colorful story with various topics of love, inspiration, celebrations, friendship, family and fun.

The gift of Spiritiles lies not only in the detailed glowing glass images but also in the story, a thoughtful slogan, poem or common saying, embedded on the sides. Every piece is handcrafted in USA, at Houston's Atlanta studio, made with American copper and colored glass hand painted and then fired at 1500 degrees. Each one is a delight. Several sold while we chatted with Ward and Houston about his successful art business.

Houston and the seven people he works with produce these tiles, one at a time, all by hand. It started in 2008 when a man he describes as a gypsy -- artist Zingaro -- taught him the craft. A year later, he met Ward in Philadelphia, and has been the Ward Ellinger Gallery's biggest seller ever since. Ward says the inspirational tiles cause one's spirit to soar and believe.

There I am between Houston Llew and Ward Ellinger! Houston began his artistic career early but it came to fruition under Zingaro. Houston himself is remarkable, having studied at Auburn University with careers in logistics, accounting and poker. When asked what he wants people to know most about him, he modestly replied that he draws good stick figures.

Look at his charming Spiritiles at the Ellinger Gallery and you will be enchanted as I am. This artist is quite an entrepreneur.

There are multiple examples, so lovely and affordable at $95 each.

Take a look at his gallery in the CAMP Rehoboth courtyard at 39 Baltimore Avenue in downtown Rehoboth Beach.



DAN GAFFNEY UPDATE--- A week after the shocking news that Gaffney had quit WGMD comes word, via his Facebook page, that he will become the program director and one of several talk show hosts for Lewes-based WXDE, the new Delaware 105.9, which currently airs country music. The new format is scheduled to start the day after Labor Day Weekend.

BOAT CATCHES FIRE, DRIFTS IN BAY--- A boat at Massey's Landing caught fire around 7 a.m. and burst into flames as it drifted from the boat ramp. A 43-year-old man had reportedly been connecting a battery when it blew up and burned his beard. He declined an ambulance. For more details and photos, see the WGMD Website.

MAN CRITICALLY INJURED IN CRASH WITH TREE--- A man described as being in his 20's or 30's was critically injured when he slammed his vehicle into a tree at Zion Church Road near Evans Road in the Roxana area. It was reported around 6:35 p.m. Sunday. He was taken to Peninsula Regional Medical Center after being cut from the wreckage.

DRUNKEN 13-YEAR-OLD BOY TAKEN TO BEEBE HOSPITAL--- A Bethany Beach ambulance took a 13-year-old intoxicated boy to Beebe Hospital. The police had the boy waiting at the police station around 9:45 p.m. Sunday. He was described as "not making any sense." The EMS personnel were uncertain where the boy's parents were.

CAR ACCIDENT ON FERRY--- A Dodge Grand Caravan collided with a Toyota Camry around 2:20 p.m. Sunday onboard one of the Cape May-Lewes ferryboats. It happened on the starboard side near the engine room. There were no injuries. The Delaware River & Bay Authority police were investigating.

STINK BOMB INCIDENT--- Police were searching for a group of six to 10 teens who were accused of throwing a "stink bomb" into two shops on Rehoboth Avenue around 9:15 p.m. Friday. They were described as a mix of white, black and Hispanic teens, both girls and boys. One of them wore a T-shirt that read "come at me bro."

OCEAN CITY SURF INJURIES REQUIRING FLY-OUTS--- Ocean City had two surf injuries requiring a medevac since Friday. A 15-year-old boy reportedly dove into the surf around 2:25 p.m. Friday at 22nd Street. He could not feel anything below his chest. A helicopter flew him from Jolly Roger Amusement Park to a trauma center. Just before 11 a.m. Saturday, an adult male suffered a cut to his forehead with a tingling sensation in his fingers after a surf incident at 89th Street. He was flown to a trauma center from Northside Park.



America's most crowded beaches

MERR funding cloud lifted

Undersized crabs/fish lead DNREC enforcement citations

DNREC to dedicate $3.2M boat ramp facility at Slaughter Beach (July 30, today)

Pennsylvania officer's credentials/credit cards stolen in Milton

SOC: Controversial Rehoboth Beach tree hearing scheduled for Monday re: Henlopen Ave. (this afternoon)

Army Corps remains in Rehoboth

Rehoboth Beach lifeguard stands vandalized

Rehoboth Beach provides free parking for scooters and mopeds

FREE watermelon on the Rehoboth Boardwalk (this Wednesday)

Rehoboth Beach police looking for man in domestic-related kidnapping, unlawful sexual contact

Rehoboth Beach police arrest homeless man for synthetic drugs (previous Friday)

Dewey Beach town council found to have violated FOIA

Dewey Beach town council to change how it publishes meeting agendas

Dewey Beach town manager, Bob Stickles, resigns

Dewey Beach mayor disrespected in bar restrooms

Denise Campbell announces candidacy as Dewey Beach commissioner

Golf carts stolen at Pot-Nets Communities

Millsboro woman charged after crashing car into Indian River Bay, kills dog (last Saturday)

Corrections officers looking for escapee from Bethany Beach area work crew (Thursday)

Ocean City police investigate attempted sexual assaults

9 rescued after boat sinks off Ocean City coast (Saturday)

Citizen heroes identified in weekend water rescue (previous Friday)

Officer enters ocean to rescue swimmer refusing to exit water (previous Friday)

Ocean City sees increase in hotel stays, food tax revenue

Ocean City housing market looks up

Ocean City summer anthem winner announced

Pennsylvania man charged after assaulting OC officer with Jeep

Chincoteague pony swim goes off without a hitch (Wednesday)

Delaware, Maryland, Virginia ocean parks featured in the Star-Ledger



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