What started as a fishing trip for one, turned into the catch of a lifetime for another.
The Broussard family from Greensboro, Ala., chartered a trip aboard The Tailhooker with Capt. Scott Provow on Sunday off Grayton Beach in hopes that the son, 14-year-old Joe, would catch a big fish.
But when it was all said and done, his younger sister, 12-year-old SueEllen, was the one holding the rod with a 50-plus pound wahoo on the other end.
"We went because mom wanted my brother to catch something big," said SueEllen from her home in Greensboro on Wednesday afternoon.
Provow said they boarded the boat at 6 a.m. Sunday and headed out for a morning of snapper fishing.
"We caught plenty of snapper," SueEllen told The Sun, noting everybody got their two.
About 9:30 a.m. the weather started to look bad, Provow said.
"Larry Pentel had made a call on the radio that he was heading in and we should all think about getting our boats on the shore," Provow said in an email to The Sun.
"I had everyone drop their lines one more time, and SueEllen got hooked up on a nice snapper and was fighting it in fine style when all of a sudden, something grabbed the fish she was reeling in. It swam so quickly I didn't have time to get everyone else to reel up their lines," he said. "I had to just take off and follow this fish as she was rapidly running out of line."
"It was hard," SueEllen said. "The wahoo was pulling us all over.”
Her Mom was holding on to the pole at one point, while her brother helped to reel.
"We chased it for about 10 minutes," she said.
Finally they got it to the boat.
"My arms were all red … I was tired," SueEllen said.
Provow said she caught the fish on a 4/0 reel — "not a reel you go out trying to catch blue water fish like marlin."
"However what she had steal her red snapper was later to become our trophy fish," he said.
Provow said they were fishing about five miles south of Grayton on the bottom in 80-feet of water.
"The catch was a very rare catch, but even rarer was the fact that SueEllen had never (gulf) fished before and was having to hold the pole and reel as fast as she could as I chased the fish down," he said.
Once the fish was onboard The Tailhooker, they headed in as the black clouds started to roll in.
"The waves were huge," SueEllen said.
However the waves were not bigger than the smiles on the Broussard family as they posed for photos with the catch once their feet were firmly planted on the beach.
Prior to Sunday's wahoo, the biggest thing SueEllen had ever caught was a 2- or 3-pound bass.
She said they halved the wahoo with Capt. Scott and took the rest of it home.
"We cooked it back at the condo that day … it tasted like steak," she said.
But there is still plenty to go around.
"It's a lot of meat," SueEllen said. "We still have like 10 packages of meat in the freezer."