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Christy Beach, Santa Cruz Island

MARTINEZ, Andres (1948-2012), urchin diver who drowned at Kinton Point on Santa Cruz Island on June 26, 2012. He was aboard his urchin boat, Josephina Dos. The vessel went to his widow, Gloria Martinez.

In the News~

June 27, 2012 [SBIndependent]: “A search began Monday for Andres Martinez, 64-year-old Santa Barbara man who failed to surface while diving for sea urchins off the Channel Islands. At around 10:30 A.M. on Monday morning, reported Sheriff's Department spokesperson Drew Sugars, Martinez and two other men traveled on Martinez's boat to an area about 300 yards off Santa Cruz Island, a notoriously sharky area. They dove to a depth of 25 feet, but Martinez didn't resurface when the pair did 90 minutes later. According to Sugars, Martinez and his dive partners were attached to a single air tank on the surface, each connected to it by what are called 'hookah lines.' The three had originally set out from Santa Barbara Harbor. The two men started looking for Martinez and called rescuers, said Sugars. Soon after divers with the Ventura County Sheriff's Office found Martinez; weight belt and other items at the bottom of the dive location. A U.S. Coast Guard patrol boat and a helicopter with the Ventura County Sheriff's office joined the effort Monday, but did not locate Martinez. Divers were scheduled to head out again Tuesday, but weather conditions in the channel have put rescue on hold until Wednesday.”

June 27, 21012 [SacramentoBee]: “The body of an urchin diver has been found on a Santa Cruz Island beach off Santa Barbara. The Coast Guard found the body of 64-year-old Andres Martinez on Tuesday afternoon. Sheriff's spokesman Drew Sugars says there is no sign of foul play. Martinez was diving with two other men for sea urchins on Monday morning about 300 yards off Santa Cruz Island, which is 22 miles away from Santa Barbara. Martinez failed to surface. A Coast Guard patrol boat and helicopter began a search and a Ventura County sheriff's dive team was called in. But Martinez couldn't be found. The body turned up during a renewed search on Tuesday.”