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Ship to Shore

David’s seaplane is a Murphy Moose powered by a M14-P radial engine- an engine that has been in production since the 1940's.
David’s been flying since he was 11 years old and has been a pilot since 18. His mother, Rosie, was the first female to fly seaplanes in the Bahamas.
Overseas Salvage is based on a small island in the Exumas.
Salvage jobs start with a quick fly-by to assess the situation and determine what gear will be needed.
The hanger houses David’s seaplane and workshop, which has everything he needs for salvage operations and emergency repairs.
Taking a small bend out of a bronze prop from a sailboat that ran aground on a nearby reef.
David’s wife Karina, a professional surfer, also works for the business.
There are marine radios in every building on the island--always on and dialed to channel 16. David talks a sailor through diesel engine trouble, to save them from a tow.
The port side diesel engine aboard the steel trawler, Amazing Grace, David’s main salvage and long distance tow vessel.
David cleaning up the boat and organizing gear after returning from a 12-hour tow mission. A wooden schooner had broken free from her mooring in a thunderstorm the night before and washed up on the beach.
The smaller vessel, a Maine built lobster boat is used for local tows and pulling boats off beaches and reefs.
In the remote islands, spearfishing is a major source of protein.
The fish hide in reef ledges about 30-40 feet below the surface.
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Summer 2018, Bahamas

Photography by Mikey DeTemple

David Mitchell, a third-generation Bahamian, was practically born with sea legs. He runs Overseas Salvage & Maintenance
Ltd., a marine salvage company founded by his father, headquartered in the Exumas. David salvages vessels from all sorts of
perilous situations, from downed planes to boats run aground to sinking ships. He comes by his wealth of maritime expertise
and unmatched knowledge of Bahamian waters honestly. His father taught him to sail, fly, and read the wind, water, weather,
and cloud formations—all by age 12 and his mother is the first female Bahamian seaplane pilot, known for performing
countless emergency rescue flights. Our photographer, Mikey DeTemple, grew up surfing with David’s wife; the couple live
off-the-grid on a completely self-sufficient island, where they spearfish and hunt wild goat for food.