Guy Monseair, youth coach of the Pelham Community Rowing Association’s didn’t try to coddle team members Friday night outside of the group’s boathouse on Glen Island in New Rochelle.
The reality is that it has been more than two days since Tyler Madoff, their 15-year-old teammate, was swept out to sea in Honolulu after resting in a tide pool after a hike with a youth group, Monseair told about three-dozen members of Madoff’s teammates.
But Monseair also reminded them that Madoff is as strong as an ox and will do anything he can to survive. Even as a number of members in the group struggled to fight back tears, Monseair told them to remain hopeful.
“There’s never been a person who has never taken a free stroke,” Monseur told a group of about 3 dozen members. “Some people take more than others, but Tyler was not one of those. Tyler did not take free strokes.”
Madoff,who just finished his sophomore year at Scarsdale High School, was on a kayaking expedition with a youth group Wednesday when the incident happened. The group stopped to go hiking in the vicinity of the Kealakekua Bay. Madoff and another boy were sitting on some rock pools when they were swept out to see by waves.
The other boy was rescued by a nearby boat. Madoff has yet to be found.
While the U.S. Coast Guard announced earlier today that it is suspending its search, pending any new information, the search is being continued by local fire departments and local volunteers.
Monseair said he called the meeting so the kids could have some place to go and process all of the information they’ve received the past few days.
“It’s almost surreal and I think, for a lot of the kids, there’s still an enormous amount of optimism in terms of general interest and in terms of self preservation,” Monseair said. “Right now, there’s a lot of distress and concern, but also a lot of feeling of wanting to get together and put out what ever positive energy into the universe that they can.”
Monseair said the club, whose mantra is ‘the strength of the wolf is in the pack,’ is very tight knit.
“It is club made of students from 10 different school districts, but people don’t realize how extraordinarily strenuous and difficult rowing is," Monseair said. "Kids become close extremely close because they have to trust each other to go into the area of pain they need to go into to be able to perform.”
Monseair said he spoke to Madoff’s aunt earlier and heard that his parents were scheduled to land in Hawaii Friday night.