In 1994, Dan Martin of Cambria was ocean fishing with his stepfather. The two men — with the help of two scuba divers and their raft — saved the lives of four hypothermic men whose shallow-draft bass boat had overturned.
Martin, Steve Bitto, Tom Benton and others then formed the North Coast Ocean Rescue (NCOR) team.
Martin, now 75, will turn out for one more NCOR event Saturday, Sept. 15, before retiring from the rescue response team. At 9 a.m., Martin will serve as starter at San Simeon Pier for NCOR/Cambria Fire Department’s fundraiser Pier-to- Point Fun Paddle and Ocean Race. All manner of water vessels will make their way from San Simeon Bay to Leffingwell Landing.
Martin says NCOR has saved more lives for less money than any other local organization. The team, now part of Cambria Fire Department and the Cambria Community Services District, responds to calls from Ragged Point to Morro Bay. He’ll continue as an NCOR trainer, and he’ll still surf. Nowadays, “The wipeouts are a little more spectacular …” Martin said, adding, “and a little more fun, too.” —Kathe Tanner