Man reunites with woman he saved from sinking boat 41 years ago

Something Good is sponsored by Papa Murphy’s
Memory Wilkes was with her family when their boat started sinking until Doug Ritter saved them. (Something Good is sponsored by Papa Murphy's)
Published: Jun. 8, 2023 at 11:21 AM MST
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FLORIDA (3TV/CBS 5) — A woman reunited with her hero after he saved her and her family’s life from a sinking about 41 years ago.

In 1982, 8-year-old Memory Wilkes was on a ship with seven of her family members in Florida when their boat started sinking. Doug Ritter, who ran a concession on the beach back then, used his 35-foot land and sea vessel used in Vietnam to rescue the family with help from another man. They even managed to tow back the sinking boat.

Forty-one years later, Wilkes found a story in a newspaper and reconnected with Ritter on Facebook, and the reunion was a tearful one.

However, that wasn’t the only rescue Ritter performed in the 80s. He saved half a dozen swimmers caught in a rip current; in another situation, he towed a banner plane that crashed in the ocean offshore and was able to get the pilot out safely.

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