Farnsworth Bank, Santa Catalina Island

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Farnsworth Bank, Santa Catalina Island, famed fishing location, was discovered by legendary island fisherman, “Tuna George” Farnsworth. Farnsworth was known for his incredible navigational skills and his ability to catch fish when everyone else was coming up empty-handed. He named the 28-acre bank in honor of his father, Stephen Farnsworth, engineer of the coach road on Santa Catalina Island. The Bank is located south of Catalina Harbor, 1.5 miles southwest of Ben Weston Point. It is composed of pinnacles, sheer walls, caves and canyons. In 1973 in recognition of the special biological significance of Farnsworth Bank, the California Fish & Game Commission named it an ecological reserve—the only reserve completely submerged—primarily to protect the dense population of purple hydrocoral. Farnsworth Bank is home to a large diversity of algal, invertebrate and fish communities. Sport diving is popular during summer months, and moderate amounts of sportfishing occur.

Drowned at Farnsworth Bank:

In the News~

July 20, 1991 [LAT]: “A 22-year-old Chatsworth woman died Friday in a scuba diving accident off Santa Catalina Island, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department reported. The woman, whose name was not released pending notification of relatives, was a student diver on a boat operated by Ventura Dive & Sport diving school, Deputy Douglas Miller said. Five other student divers and two teachers were swimming from a vessel called Peace in 100 feet of water about 10 A.M. in an area called Farnsworth Bank.”

July 21, 1991 [LAT]: “Officials have not determined what caused the death of a 22-year-old woman who was diving with five other students and two instructors from a Ventura diving school, a Los Angeles County coroner's spokesman said Saturday. Rochanak Saberzadeh of Chatsworth was discovered unconscious on the ocean floor near Santa Catalina Island with oxygen in her scuba tank, the spokesman said.”

May 26, 2001 [LAT]: “ Miller, Timothy "Tim" W. Of Diamond Bar, CA, was lost at sea in a scuba diving accident on Sunday, May 6, 2001. He is survived by his loving parents, Richard and Julie Miller, brother Rick Miller and sister, Susan Kirwin. He was a wonderful uncle to his nieces and nephews. Tim will be greatly missed by all who knew him. Memorial Mass will be held on Wednesday, May 30, 2001 at St. Denis Catholic Church, 2151 S. Diamond Bar Blvd., Diamond Bar at 3:00 P.M.”