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Nasty Topic

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
It can take a long time to get an up-to-date response or contact with relevant users.
This reminds me of when I was 16. I forged my mom's signature on a waiver so that I could take an icediving class. :naughty

I finally told her about it a couple of years ago. She was not as amused by it as I was. :D

I thought I was a "badass"

Like I said in my last reply -
"I just did the PFD course in Miami and the one major thing that I came to realise was how lucky I am to still be alive after all my years of solo spearfishing. "
I recommend the PFD course to any and everyone interested in Freediving (if you think you're a badass like I did then you "really" need to do it). I know there are other courses and no I cannot compare PFD with them so no flames please.
What I can say is that after taking the PFD Advanced Course I am now comfortable (which means relaxed and in control) if anything happens with me or my buddy while diving (whether spearfishing, recreational or going for it!). I am hoping to do the "Performance" course in July (that's what I thought I was going to do in Feb but I'm glad I only did the Advanced).
Sorry to get into this so much but I definitely believe that there is no replacement for education and experience in this sport - open ears and a closed mouth!!

(By the way here's a pic of a work in progress:D )


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Re: Death While Freediving BLOWS!

Originally posted by sturgeon

It's ok to talk about death but I hope that neither you nor anybody else on this Forum thinks dying during freediving would be a glorious death. It's not, especially to all the friends and family members left behind! Don't fool yourself that dying during freediving would in any way be cool.

Scott Turgeon

Scott has nailed it. I too thought about this thread for a while and it brought up an uncomfortable amount of memories of friends lost and of close calls. It also made me reflect on the bit of bravado that I think is creeping around here in the form of the juvenile or ignorant, if you will, assertions that dying doing something you love is an OK way to go.

Here's a little shout out- It ain't.

Drowning is probably one of the worst ways top go, with death by fire a real bitch too. The descriptions of those brought back from near death by drowning, have all been pretty unanimous in their terror and helplessness. I mean, think back on the time(s) when you were hauling ass back to the surface or kinda-sorta stuck in that crack and oops!, "Oh man, get me the hell outta here!"; sound familiar? Now imagine that realization and REALLY being unable to get out of it. There are descriptions of the water entering your lungs as feeling like they were being seared, crushed, exploded and frozen. Then it gets worse. You're still pretty aware of what's going on at this point. You know you're screwed. From here you start to check out to varying degrees but then the stars start to fire off in your brain and it's been said that each burst was akin to having a nail driven into your skull. Nice.

Your heart doesn't actually stop for a while, but now your brain is essentially a pack of firecrackers going off- the synapses aren't firing in order; think of it as the arc of a big short circuit. Ever been zapped by a faulty outlet or appliance? Yeah, except now it's going on between your ears. I'll leave the spasms and final twitches to your imaginations...

As Scott and Anderson have, I've had to say goodbye to some freinds, dug in some markers and tossed some wreaths into the surf. One in particular comes to mind as Dan was a fair enough diver but he was a helluva guy. He died in Palau in the late 70's, most likely from DWB, as he was describing in a call to his wife, a major babe and a beautiful person inside too, that he was hitting triple digit depths easily as the water was so nice and clear-he could touch the wrecks from the surface. I was very close to Dan and not only because he was always scoping out my girlfriend at the time, but that his abilities were matched by his humbleness. He busted his ass to come up with the ducats to go to Truk and Palau and had his wife out for a week too. The guy was just loving life.

Strange though in that he always had the flippant way of saying that he was OK with dying while diving as "I love it so..." and "Hey, if my number's up, it's up". Those words did nothing to lessen the grief and saddness of his wife as she sat with me and received a flag presented to her as his poor substitute- his body being sealed in the casket per Customs service protocol. Her murmurs of, "But I just saw him...", will be with me forever. Sure he died doing something he loved and yeah, maybe his number was up. But that's small consolation to those that have been lessened by his loss. I have a plaque that is given by my old dive club in his honor, and it's the only one that resides on my wall alongside the kid' pictures.

Think about that when you're at some fete' and going on about being able to hit 20m for 3 minutes all day. Your loss might make a sentence here if you choose, but in the final analysis, your space will be filled by another desiring to learn how to do it deeper and longer.

How you choose to dive now, today or tomorrow or the next trip, indeed the rest of your life, will reflect more on you than how you died.

FD48 (Doug Morgan)

Today I write with tears in my eyes. My good friend Doug Morgan has died. I know Doug mostly through email and met him on this forum. He was the one who encouraged me to compete, and was always very supportive. Last year, my wife and I spent a week camped in his and his wife Carol's front yard, and he took me spearfishing for the first time. I will always remember that day as one of the best of my life. Two friends in the sea.
My love to Carol.
Doug, thank you for being my friend while you were here. I really wanted to spend some more time with you. Good hunting, and I will see you again.
With love,
Erik Young
I met Doug last summer on a freediving trip to Victoria and Nanaimo BC with Eric Fattah and Stephanie Ortlepp. We dove at one of Doug's favourite spots. He regaled me with windsurfing tales of big winds and big air and told me about the years he spend in the Great Lakes (where I grew up) wreck diving and doing salvage.

I only met him once but it was enough to appreciate him as a great person.

He will be missed in our community here at Deeper Blue and in the waters of the North Pacific. Many have asked me to pass along condolences to his wife, Carol, and to his friends on Deeper Blue:

Tom Lightfoot
Mandy-Rae Cruickshank
Eric Fattah
Stephanie Ortlepp
Tony Gray
Kirk Krack
Raquel Roizman
and many others that aren't on email.

Take care, Doug.

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awww shit.

I don't know why it escaped me earlier, with Doug's screenname and Christian name being different but the enormity of this loss has now really hit. Doug was a class act.

Nasty topic come reality

Dear friends,
I am Erik's wife. I have heard all about you through him, and have come to know all of you very well through his stories and reading all that you have written any time I sign on. At first Erik told me about this Nasty topic, I have to admit, I didnt want anything to do with it. We had a huge fight about it, and then later on I realized in my own time, that it really is a good thing to be able to tell your friends about your loss of a fellow diver. It is not good to keep it quiet, and it should be told to all, as this is part of the healing and grieving process (I believe). I am however, not as evolved in the whole acceptance of death as my husband, I am very selfish and dont want anyone I love to die. It will take me time to come to terms with the death of a friend or my husband. But I will come online and let all know, when I myself have dealt with it.

This comes at a time when Doug, a good friend of Erik and me, has died. Erik found out through this forum, and called me with the news. Doug is a fantastic, creative spirit, with a love for life, and water. He kindly, and very patiently took me out to windsurf, and didnt make fun of my attempts. He even put up balloons for our arrival to visit him out in Lanzville. A genuine friend and good soul, I am sure that we shall see him around and meet him another time. Although I didnt know him well, what I did know, I was impressed with. I grieve for the loss of him, for the loss of his talent and words of wisdom, but know that all will be well.

Keep safe, and dont leave us behind by making a stupid mistake... be careful, but also go do what you have to do..... dive.

Love to you all
but especially my Erik so very far away
Just so people know - Doug was known as Freediver48 here on Deeper Blue.

This news hit me quite hard. I originally heard about it on the Freedivelist (FDL) and had to do a double take as I knew of Doug through the site and had exchanged emails and PM's on several occasions.

It is the first time we as a community have had to deal with something like this and it feels almost surreal considering this thread started up a few days before we heard the sad news.

Although I have only met a very small fraction of the community here, I feel I get to know you through the day-to-day exchanges on this site.

From myself and on behalf of the whole Deeper Blue Editorial Staff....

....goodbye Doug, you will be missed by all of us.
FD 48

I only knew Doug from this forum but he seemed like a great guy and was always willing to share his knowledge. I feel the loss and never met him, I can only imagine the loss of those who knew him personally. Take care everyone. Goodbye Doug.
My deepest condolences to Erik and all who knew Doug Morgan. While my only contact was through this forum, Doug seemed to be a generous and helpful individual and certainly many other members have spoken very highly of him.

I have followed this thread with interest. It is only now after reading Erik's post and Crispin's post that I felt compelled to respond. At the ripe old age of 40, I am starting to feel like a bit of a survivor. For the past 23 years, I have been fortunate to live in the mountains of Western N.C. where I have been able to pursue all my various passions, from whitewater kayaking to mtn. biking, climbing, etc, etc.

These pursuits were not undertaken to fulfill a need for adrenaline. I simply enjoyed being outdoors while pursuing something I enjoyed and I accepted that there were risks involved. A large part of that enjoyment was working toward a level of proficiency that allowed a certain flow and level of safety to whatever activity I was immersed in at the time.

While many of these pursuits would be considered "risky", I feel safer while involved in any of these pursuits than I do flying in airplane, (even prior to 9/11) or even driving in a car. By and large, I control my experience by weighing my skills against the prevailing conditions and I have considerable control over my experience

Having said all of this, I have also seen cancer and what it did to the patient and the family. I haven't reconciled that one in my own mind, yet it did change my view on life and what is important. From having everything being status quo, to all of sudden watching someone being told that they have six months to live and the sudden downslide thereafter, was both incredibably sad and frightening as both the preciousness and fragility of life were driven home. Probably most frightening was the lack of control we have over cancer; i.e. it is somewhat a crapshoot.

Over the 23 years that I have kayaked, I have had six friends killed while paddling. Of those six, five passed away in the last 7 years as the limits of whitewater were pushed to the extremes. These weren't "newbies"; two were U.S. team members and the third was an Olympian. The line between surviving and passing was razor thin and they unfortanately were ever so slightly on the wrong side of the line. We had raced and trained together and I saw how much pain their deaths brought to both friends and family. It has been a long evolution from being invulnerable youth to realizing that we were quite mortal and mistakes in any high level pursuit have serious if not grievous consequences.

I am more careful now than ever before. While I was always cognizant that a serious injury or my untimely passing would have a huge impact on my family, it has come much more to the forefront of my thinking in recent years. I am being less "selfish" in how far I push my limits due to the potential impact to those around me should I push too far. My father had once told me that the worst thing a parent could go through was the passing of one of their children and I never forgot that.

As a relative newbie to freediving, I am trying to educate myself as to all the risks while I train myself both physically and mentally to be a safer diver. Crispin said it well when he said "be the best you can be". Hopefully, education, (attending the July Performance Freediving clinic) training/repetition and exercising judgement will allow me a long diving career full of enjoyment. While the risks may be inherent, we can control a significant portion of the risk that we have chosen to assume. At least that is my goal.

Sorry for the long post. I must be at that mid life crisis stage and this thread catalyzed some thoughts. Again, my condolences to those who knew Doug.

Regards and safe diving,

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I'll second that...

You're not at all alone in your realization of frailty, Mark.

I for one have been taking a long look at things lately and I'm still ahead on the "whew! that was a close one" column, but that list is going to come up short someday if I don't keep after the education and humble thing.

Nice stuff.


Rod Kolke, who originally informed the freediving community of Doug Morgan's death on the freedivelist, has passed an obituary and picture on to me for the freedivecanada web site. You can see it on the front page for the next week or so.


Tom Lightfoot
freedivecanada webmaster
Freediver48 -

You know how there are some posts that you see the name of who put them up there and you say "ah, I'll check it later" and then maybe you do or maybe you don't..... and then there are posts ... like those from freediver48 that you would click on to see right then what he had to say.. Doug was always upbeat and although I visited with him only a few times here through the board he sure seemed like a heck of a good guy. My condolence to his family and his friends. I will miss him on the board.

A life lived large

A tribute to Doug.

Solace in the memory of a life lived larged.
Not the anguish of a missed moment to be done later.
Balancing the passions over the years
To move beyond limits of fear and culture.
Being open to the greatness around one.
A life lived large with the courage to explore
The vast reaches of existence.
With exuberance to share, compassion to care.
The depth of spirit to love.
Lessons for all.
A life lived large.

In lasting memory and honor for all you taught me, Good Bye Doug I hope you have good winds on the rest of your journey, Angus
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