Angler Survives in Gulf of Mexico for 30 Hours

Angler Survives in Gulf of Mexico for 30 Hours
Ken Henderson

We've heard our share of survival stories from the open ocean, but this is one of the most harrowing in recent memory.

A Texas duo's fishing trip in the Gulf of Mexico ended in tragedy last week when their boat sprang a leak, stranding the two friends in the frigid water.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Ken Henderson recounted the events that led up to he and longtime friend Ed Coen treading water for over a day.

Henderson said he and Coen were fishing from their 30-foot-scarab Thursday afternoon when the boat sprung a leak, quickly filling with water. Attempts to start the engine failed, the motors flooded by the rising water. Radio calls went unanswered, and cell phone signals were nonexistent.

High winds soon tipped the drifting boat, plunging both men into the icy ocean. The two tread floated in the water, unable to swim to nearby gas wells, but Coen's health became progressively worse, and at about 3 p.m. the next day, Henderson cut the strap tying them together and began swimming to find help. At about 2 a.m., he finally reached an oil rig, where he was able to phone his wife, who in turn called the Coast Guard.

RELATED: Survive Until They Arrive

Henderson was taken ashore hours later and began searching for Coen, but it was too late. After spending over 30 hours in the frigid Gulf, Coen had passed away.

The firsthand account of this story is one of the most heartbreaking stories we've heard, and also one of survival and personal sacrifice. Our hearts go out to the Coen family for their loss. You can read the complete story here.

Get Your Fish On.

Plan your next fishing and boating adventure here.

Recommended for You


Find and Fish Bluegill Beds Efficiently

Terry Madewell - May 22, 2019

You can catch bluegill faster with these strategies.


State Records Reported in Maryland, Michigan

G&F Online Staff - May 23, 2019

It must be time for summer fishing because records are falling everywhere.


Baitfish for Bass: Search, Suspend or Sink Crankbaits

Jason Houser - May 21, 2019

Crankbaits mimic exactly what they eat when hungry — other fish!

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Simms' Solarflex Ultra Cool Armor Hoody

John Frazier of Simms Fishing Products helps OSG's Lynn Burkhead understand the new features of the new Simms' Solarflex Ultra Cool Armor sun protection hoody.

Minn Kota's Brad Henry shows OSG's Lynn Burkhead that there's much to like in the new Minn Kota Riptide Terrova saltwater trolling motor that comes with I-Pilot and an 87-inch shaft.

MLF BPT angler and former Classic champ Casey Ashley has been with Costa del Mar sunglasses his whole career. At ICAST 2019, he shows OSG writer Lynn Burkhead some new products and talks how to pick the right lens color for the water.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories


5 Ways To Catch Catfish on Lures

Keith Sutton - September 16, 2015

As most catfish anglers know, blue cats, channel cats and flatheads will eat darn near...


10 Biggest Catfish World Records of All Time

Jack Vitek - December 08, 2014

Unless you live in Antarctica, the only continent they aren't known to inhabit, there is a...


10 Most Common Reel Performance Problems

Anietra Hamper

Here are the 10 most common reel performance problems and how to fix them.

See More Stories

More Saltwater


Record Catches Reported in New Jersey

G&F Online Staff - July 25, 2019

Two saltwater records fall since Memorial Day weekend.


Angler Tops State African Pompano Mark by 14 pounds

Lynn Burkhead - August 16, 2019

The big fish caught off coast of Georgia was second saltwater state record this month.


Georgia Woman Catches Record Mutton Snapper

Lynn Burkhead

Janet Monroe's 18-pound, 9.92-ounce fish is certified by state officials.

See More Saltwater

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services


GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.