My blog was already published yesterday when Dave Lilly called with the shocking news that Stan Zagleski Jr. had died in Shrewsbury River.
Stan mated on his father’s Elaine B. II from Bahrs in Highlands for many years as they built up a reputation for finding doormat fluke and as experts in wreck fishing. When I was saltwater editor of the Star-Ledger, I enjoyed long phone conversations with Stan Sr. who always referred to his son as “Young Stan”, and was proud of his accomplihments as a scuba diver in the winter as well as on the boat.
Unfortunately, the senior skipper passed away from cancer over the winter, and Stan (54)took over the wheel as the boat’s success continued. What happened yesterday is still a mystery, but from what I can piece together from Police reports and other sources, it appears that Stan was walking around the dock around 10:30 after too few anglers showed up for the daily trip despite beautiful weather. He either triped and fell into the river between the dock and his boat or may have suffered a medical condition which prevented hiim from swimming to safety. There was quite likely a head blow during the fall, but the actual problem hasn’t been determined as yet. Two boaters at Gateway Marina saw him struggling, but didn’t get to him in time.
Pray not only for Stan, but also for Elaine who has lost both of her Stans within months.
The Golden Eagle from Belmar picked away at bluefish from 2 to 5 pounds on long drifts this morning before running off to limit the boat with the two sea bass a man presently allowed, They also had some ling, fluke and Spanish mackerel. There were also sea bass limits on yesterday’s 4:30 p.m. trip.
Dave Lilly had easy limits of good-sized fluke again yesterday despite a roaring current that required 16-ounce sinkers
.At Atatlantic Highlands, fluking was also good yesterday on the Fishermen for both shorts and keepers as a 7 11/16 pound fluke edged a 6 9/16-pounder for the pool.
A northeast wind is forecast for tomorrow — but at only 5 knots.
I’m always happy to answer phone calls, but don’t text. Gill, who was at my garage sale, sent a text which disappeared. Give a call or e-mail cristori@alristoriThoughoptimum seems to have my internet connection fixed, there have been some problems with WordPress — including a paragraph from a previous column that showed up in the middle when I published.