PANAMA CITY BEACH — For those who have walked across the coast over the last couple days near beach access 2 in Bay County, odds are they've seen that something peculiar washed ashore.

At about 10 p.m. Wednesday, after battling roughly 20-foot swells in the face of Hurricane Sally, an unmanned sailboat arrived to the Panhandle following drifting through the Gulf for about three days.



Dubbed "Yes Dear," the 43-foot vessel is the same one that four people were rescued from Sunday roughly 60 nautical miles off the coast of Clearwater, said Erik Villa, a petty officer at a Coast Guard station in Tampa, who added that a distress call came in at about 10 a.m. from an emergency beacon aboard.

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"Things like this are important for boaters to learn from," Villa said. "Whenever they go out that far, having a (beacon) gives you that advantage to send an alert and the Coast Guard will be able to locate you easier."



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After pinpointing the ship, the Coast Guard dispatched a helicopter from Clearwater to try and save the four-person crew. As winds roared and the boat bounced around like a buoy in the Gulf, the helicopter was forced to turn around. The Coast Guard then made contact with a nearby container ship that swooped in to the rescue, Villa added.

For Chris Hill, a Texas resident vacationing in Panama City Beach, witnessing a sail boat wash ashore will be something he'll remember forever.




Stars shine through the remaining clouds from Hurricane Sally on Sept. 17, 2020 over the "Yes Dear" of Tampa, Fla. The "Yes Dear" washed ashore in an unincorporated section of Bay County near Public Beach Access 2 on Sept. 16, 2020. The four person crew was rescued by a passing container ship on Sept. 13, 2020 as Hurricane Sally made her way through the Gulf of Mexico.
[PATTI BLAKE/THE NEWS HERALD]