Entries by Josh Hale

Veracruz Academy

22 years ago Vic Maceo and I joined a group from Galveston who went down to our sister city of Veracruz, Mexico in a delegation from Galveston. We went during Carnival, which in Veracruz is a really big deal. Veracruz is a huge tourist destination and during holidays it seems like all of Mexico City […]

Surf Spot

People who don’t surf often have a misconception that there’s not very good surf in Galveston. And it’s true that most days if you drive down the seawall and look out to the gulf there’s not much in the way of waves. But if you know a few tricks and secret spots, there’s more than […]


Lifeguarding in the ’80’s was a different thing. Today, with a staff of almost 130, a strict policy and procedure manual, and a very long, intense, and comprehensive training course, we run one of the most professional beach guarding organizations in the country. The guards that make it through are reliable, committed, and professional. Of […]

Dolphin Story

I met a guy the other day who had an interesting story about a dolphin. He grew up as a surfer/swimmer/lifeguard in Southern California. Life happened- he blinked and he found himself married and working 70 hours a week as a very successful stockbroker in LA. Big parties, big money, drugs, fake friends, the entire […]

Lapse of Judgment

My daughter Kai and I were perched at the top of the drop-off laughing uncontrollably. She was in my lap and we were about to slide down the algae covered surface into a swirling pool of water. The water rushed past us as we barely kept ourselves from shooting down the natural slide. She is […]


I wound my way through the 6 foot high coral heads looking at all the beautiful animals in the tidal pools. There were starfish of every imaginable color, really big sea urchins, and colorful fish trapped in the pools by the receding tide. The bright African sun shone down from a blue sky speckled with […]


The weather last weekend was a good dry run for the emergency services. With the mix of a low in the Gulf, the incredibly powerful hurricane crossing over from Mexico, and a strong frontal system converging all around the same time no one knew exactly how bad it would get. There are a lot of […]

Car In The Water

“Beach Patrol, car in the water 8 mile road bayside. Occupants possibly trapped inside”. A call we dread, particularly at night. Supervisor Mary Stewart was on call for Beach Patrol last Tuesday. Supervisor/Officer Austin Kirwin happened to be near the radio and asked if she wanted assistance, which she wisely accepted. Water call at night […]

Early Run

The air had just a tinge of pre-dawn chill and the sun peeked over the water as I started my early morning run. The rays were touching the tops of buildings and were moments from hitting us as I jogged past the woman sitting hunched over and alone on the seawall bench. She must have […]

Sharkbite Reflections

If you somehow missed all the media coverage this week, a 13 year old boy from Odessa was bitten by a shark last Monday. He and his brother were swimming around 37th street and noticed fish swimming all around them. One fish even hit him which caused them to start towards shore. When they were […]