Thom Beers, executive producer of “Deadliest Catch” shares an excerpt from the soon-to-be-released book titled “Deadliest Catch: Desperate Hours”. It’s due to hit the bookstores approximately April 8th! In the narrative below, Beers shares his memories of going out on the F/V Fierce Allegiance. The first show that aired on Discovery about crab fishing, was “Deadliest Job”, which dates back to 1999 and the fishing vessel featured was none other then the Fierce Allegiance. According to Beers below, it was a deadly season out in the Bering sea…
After several days of picking crab, I started to develop what crabbers call “the claw,” which meant my hands wouldn’t open completely. My heavy rubber gloves couldn’t keep the frigid water from numbing my hands. They throbbed and wouldn’t open. Captain Rick and his deck boss, Tony, had seen this many times before and offered up a rather unusual cure: Ureic acid would make the pain go away. They told me to go out on deck and pee on my hands. This was the tonic. So I followed the prescription, and as I finished I looked up in the wheelhouse and caught a quick glimpse of the skipper and his deck boss having a great laugh at my expense. I was a greenhorn on their ship and I paid my dues.
There was also sadness that season. Several boats sank in the heavy seas, and seven men didn’t return home to their loved ones. This is the baggage carried by anyone who’s worked the Bering Sea. We all know someone who hasn’t returned, and it lays heavy in our souls.
Something changes in a person once he’s spent time at sea and I’m no exception. When I returned to Dutch Harbor after the journey, I saw a different man in the mirror. A heavy growth of face fuzz wasn’t the only thing different. I could see it in my eyes. I’d survived and even thrived on this adventure. I spent the day walking around Dutch and grunting like a feral beast. Words didn’t come to me till the second day on land. I felt like I’d spit in the eye of the devil and returned from hell to tell my story.
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