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Brookings man wins big

Brookings resident Kevin Newell holds the $6,000 check for catching the largest fish of the 2013 Slam’n Salmon Ocean Derby — the Chinook weighed 38.1 pounds. The Pilot/Jef Hatch
Brookings resident Kevin Newell holds the $6,000 check for catching the largest fish of the 2013 Slam’n Salmon Ocean Derby — the Chinook weighed 38.1 pounds. The Pilot/Jef Hatch
More than just fish were caught at the 10th annual Slam’n Salmon Ocean Derby as long-time fisherman Bill Doty used the final ceremonies as a stage to hook 2007 derby winner Cindy Carman to be his wife.

Carman let Doty slip the engagement ring on her finger six years, to the day, after she won the derby and gave her winner’s ring to Doty as a gift for being, “the best skipper.” 

“I was surprised,” Carman said. “Even after seeing him walk up with the box, it surprised me.”

While Doty and Carman may have won the hearts of the fishermen and fans on scene, Brookings resident Kevin Newell was the big money winner as he caught a 38.1-pound Chinook to win the event and the $6,000 purse.

Ron Webster took second place and walked away with a $2,500 check.

Third place was won by 15-year-old Holly West from Marysville, Wash. 

“I came last year and I loved it,” West said when asked why she competed this year. “It feels great to beat my dad out in weight. It’s fantastic and I’ll definitely come back next year.”

West drove down for the event with her father who, she says, has been fishing the event for years.

More than 400 fish were caught by more than 450 fishermen over the three-day event and, according to Port Manager Ted Fitzgerald, the event brought more people into the port than he has seen since the Port of Brookings Harbor took the event over a few years ago.

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