Salcombe Lifeboat Crew
Symon Cater

I joined the crew in 2002 when I turned 19. I was the next generation of Cater men on the Crew following in the footsteps of my Uncles Robert and David Cater who were part of the Crew. 

My Grandfather Brian Cater (aka Horse) joined the Salcombe crew in the 1950’s after he finished his National Service. He was Mechanic and then became Coxswain of the Baltic Exchange. 

My Grandmother Colleen Cater (Nee Cook) used to sell the merchandise for the Salcombe Lifeboat fundraising efforts before we even had a shop.

My Great Great Uncle John Ashley Cook, perished in the Salcombe Lifeboat disaster of 1919 after he had returned on leave from World War 1.

Over my 21 years of being on the Crew I have been on many different shouts from catamarans that have capsized, containerships sinking & search and rescue for people lost in the water.

90% of them have always come out with a positive ending.

Most notably the capsize of Hooligan5 off the coast of Prawle in 2007. We had to search in stormy conditions, collaborating with the Coastguard Helicopter to find people who were in the water. It was extremely challenging but rewarding to recover the members on board, unfortunately with one casualty lost despite our best efforts.

I feel fortunate to have been on the crew in Salcombe for so many years working with so many fantastic people making friendships that will last a lifetime.

Now I have a young family of two boys, the eldest of which is named after Great Great Uncle Ashley who perished on the Lifeboat disaster. My wife still worries when the pagers go off, but she has resigned herself to the fact our boys will both want to be on the crew when they are older.


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