Letters to the Editor

Posted on 26 September 2012 by LeslieM

Remembering Ray McAllister

Dear Editor:

The South Florida nautical community has lost a great dive buddy in Dr. Ray McAllister of Lighthouse Point. He learned to SCUBA dive in 1952 and with a little help from his friends, was able to still dive even at the age of 89.

You can visit Ray McAllister’s favorite reef by going to GPS Coordinates 26 13.144’N/ 80 04.213’W. This site is a little south of the Pompano Beach pier and about a mile off shore. Filled with a variety of reef fish, this spot was dedicated on his 80th birthday (June 26, 2003) by him diving with a group of dive buddies.

I was first introduced to Dr. Ray by purchasing his book Diving Location in the early 1980s. This book was first published in 1971, prior to GPS. He taught us how to “mark” our dive spots using the alignment of buildings along the South Florida coastline. He defined the South Florida reefs with his verbal descriptions, along with black-and-white underwater pictures of dive sites from West Palm Beach to North Miami.

But it was his respect for the reefs and the ocean that Dr. Ray McAllister will be remembered for.

I had the pleasure of working with him to place an artificial reef off Deerfield beach that ultimately led to the sinking and dedication of the shipwreck the Miracle of Life on June 6, 2009. Dr. McAllister was an early advocate of saving the reef and worked tirelessly to protect reefs for the enjoyment of future generations. He had a full and legendary life with the pristine South Florida reefs as his legacy.

May he be blessed with mild winds and calm seas as he navigates the oceans in heaven.

Jim “Chiefy” Mathie

Nautical Views columnist, Observer


Community support for Relay for Life

Dear Editor:

Thanks to the efforts of our local small business owners and residents, Relay For Life of Deerfield Beach, Lighthouse Point and Hillsboro Beach has raised over $100,000 this year to make the 2012 fundraising campaign another great success in the Relay’s 11-year history.

We owe a special “thank you” to Loren and Pheona Strassburg of Deerfield Thrift for organizing and sponsoring our final fundraiser of the year, a treasure hunt and car wash at their business, held on Saturday, August 18.

To all those who participated, we appreciate your generous support toward our fight against cancer.

Other local businesses who contributed to the success of this event with their financial support include: A Summer Place Consignments, Scuba Network, East Coast Services, Dalsimer Atlas Floral & Event Decorators, 101 Liquors, Denture Plus, X Terminator, Inc., Sunshine Gold Buyers, Cove Bagel & Deli, Boats 4 Less, Payless Jewelry, Barbara’s Cleaning Service, Inc. and The Final Cut.

While one year ends, another begins with our first fundraiser for the 2013 [fiscal] year. Please join us Sunday, Sept. 30 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Masterpiece Barbershop, 3640 N. Federal Hwy. in Lighthouse Point for a “Cancer Cutoff” featuring $16 haircuts. All proceeds go to Relay For Life.

In some way, cancer affects every one of us. Thank you to all members of our community who support us in our efforts to eliminate cancer.

Relay For Life

Deerfield Beach, Lighthouse Point and Hillsboro Beach

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