A New York teen caught a huge blue marlin, weighing in at more than 1,000 pounds, while fishing off the coast of Hawaii in February.
Kai Rizzuto of Brooklyn, New York was fishing with his grandfather, Hawaii fishing author Jim Rizzuto, when he made the extraordinary catch. The struggle to reel the giant fish took more than 30 minutes, and once they finally got it ashore to be weighed, they were shocked it tipped the scale at 1,058 pounds.
“For my first one to be a grander it's just an unreal experience,” 16-year-old Kai told NBC News.
Jim explained to Pete Thomas Outdoors how his grandson was able to catch such a large fish.
“We saw the fish jump and immediately went into ‘big-fish mode,’” Jim explained. “That meant going hard right from the start. Carlton Arai (a crewman) is world-famous for being cool and calm, but he yelled, ‘big fish’ at the top of his lungs and flew across the deck to get the angler settled and bring in the (other) lines.
“The fish tore up the surface from port to starboard and back, which kept us close. Carlton told Kai to push the drag to ‘sunset’ (full bore), and lean on the fish for maximum advantage,” Jim continued. “(Captain McGrew Rice) kept after the fish wherever it went. When it got close after 30 minutes, it rolled over and was done. At that point, all matters of possible release became moot.”
Jim says that when they were able to drag the fish to shore, they were greeted by a large crowd that had heard that the teen had potentially caught a grander.
“By the time we got back to the dock, the news of a potential grander had drawn a big crowd,” Jim said. “Lots of cheers when the 1,058 pounds was announced. Kai comes to the Big Island several times a year and has been fishing since he was 2. This was his first blue marlin.”
Rice, captain of the fishing boat, called the catch the “fish of a lifetime.”