On May 23rd, 2018, the City of San Diego Lifeguard Service and The Lifeguard History Project of the San Diego Lifesaving Association hosted a memorial tribute for the 13 victims of the May 5th, 1918 drowning. The event of 100 years ago spurred the growth of the lifeguard service in San Diego. The new book HELP! San Diego Lifeguards to the Rescue: A History of Their Service – Volume 1 1868-1941 by Michael Martino details the tragedy.
The first two copies of the book were presented to Mayor Kevin Faulconer and Council Member Lorie Zapf as part of the ceremony. Ten years in the making, HELP! is a comprehensive look at the early history of San Diego’s lifeguard service.
As part of the ceremony, 13 lifeguards, including Sgt. Rick Strobel, participated in a remembrance swim out. Each victims’ name was read out and a bell was rung. A lifeguard ran out into the cold waves.
Michael Martino, a former lifeguard himself, signed books at a reception held at Wonderland Ocean Pub after the ceremony.
For more photos from the event, take a look at the album on Facebook.