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Torrance angler saves sea turtle

August 19, 2008 |  4:36 pm

Philip Friedman gives a flip

Philip Friedman, 17, a senior at Bishop Montgomery High in Torrance, did not enjoy an illegal dish of turtle soup on a recent trip to Palmas de Cortez in southern Baja California, as the accompanying photo might suggest.

After spotting the creature sputtering around on the surface, he dove into offshore waters known to contain large sharks, grabbed the turtle and delivered it aboard the fishing cruiser.

Wrapped snugly around one of its flippers was the plastic ring of a six-pack container, which Friedman and a deckhand removed before setting the turtle free. I once made the same heroic act — but with great trepidation — during a trip out of La Paz farther to the north.

I vowed never to toss plastic or other items overboard, because they put innocent sea creatures and birds at peril. As for Friedman, he can be assumed guilty for killing a small number of fish, which became dinner back at the hotel.

—Pete Thomas

Photo: Philip Friedman is happy to be back aboard a Baja sportfishing cruiser after jumping overboard to free this turtle from plastic that had become attached to one of its flippers. Credit: 976-tuna.com.