MIAMI, FL (04.06.2020) – Just before the Coronavirus changed all of our lives, Omar Fakhri and his son Laithe drove to South Florida from their home outside Dallas, Texas to pick up the 230 Reef Runner center console that they won in the Battle Breast Cancer Giveaway at February’s Miami International Boat Show. It couldn’t have been a better Spring Break and birthday gift for Laithe, who just turned 12, and his father, who with the Reef Runner Boat, is beginning his “fleet,” adding to his current 26’ center console fishing boat.
Fakhri learned of the Reef Runner campaign, its third annual boat giveaway campaign to fight breast cancer, through an online forum where he has been active for 10 years. Like most who have had a family or social circle brush with breast cancer, Fakhri was eager to support a good cause, but never dreamed of actually winning the boat. His wife even told him, “No one wins a fishing boat!” So when Reef Runner’s owner, Donna Milo, called Fakhri on February 17 and told him he won, he was in an airport, traveling internationally and laughed, “Yeah, right, I know you’re screwing with me!” It took a moment for reality to set in, as the group of sponsors and fans at the Miami Boat Show had gathered at the Reef Runner booth and were listening eagerly to the speaker-broadcasted phone call.
At delivery a few weeks later, grins were broad and spirits were high as the father and son team joined with Patrick Farris, VP and Donna Milo, owner of Reef Runner Boats for a sea trial and the twin 230 center consoles hit Biscayne Bay. Fakhri connected his phone by Bluetooth to the KICKER Marine Audio system, tuning in his son’s favorite Sirius Radio channels.
The donated KICKER system, valued at just under $5,000, included bow and T-top mounted speakers, lighted coaxial covers, a subwoofer, amplifier, source unit and remote and was installed by Reef Runner as a weather proof system to all KICKER certified and marine compliant standards.
“KICKER did a great job on this system!” said Fakhri, “It was easy to connect, and we cranked it up—WOW! It was really loud!” They adjusted it a bit to enjoy their favorite tunes and the duo set out with a mild chop and wind on Biscayne Bay.
Laithe named the boat “Trident” as a nod to Poseidon, the Greek god of the sea’s spear, since he saw the 23’ Reef Runner piercing the sea. He and his father were setting out to get the feel of the boat–and its sound system—while heading to a local beach to go for a swim, explore the area for the afternoon and plan the rest of their trip before heading back to Texas. The experience provided some family bonding–a real plus to a perfect South Florida boating day! Fakhri intends to use the Reef Runner as the family’s “reef” boat for shallow red and snapper fishing.
“This hull holds really well—she’ll lean in the turns but holds!” said Fakhri. Milo explained that Reef Runner’s keel strake enables that handling—“She loves the waves and just wants to jump over them! There’s no pounding,” Milo added.
The Battle Breast Cancer boat giveaway enjoyed sponsorships not just from KICKER Marine Audio, but also from Evinrude, Edson, TACO Marine, Ocean Tamer, SeaDek by Castaway Customs and Center Consoles Only, but KICKER was pleased to add to the prize package, plans to continue its support, and as a result, became Reef Runner’s sound system of choice for its boats. “We love the system!” says Milo, “It was easy to install and the quality and sound is impeccable!”
“We are pleased to support the effort of Reef Runner Boat as so many of us have had our lives touched by cancer. We see this as a great opportunity to add our expertise and products to this effort—boats built for a great cause!” says Jeremy Bale, KICKER Marine Audio’s National Brand Manager for Lifestyle and Marine Products. “KICKER Marine Audio delivers a trustworthy experience,” he adds, “We deliver total confidence in our product as proven in over 40 years of manufacturing top-quality mobile sound systems, with the goal to continually grow our brand and reputation in the recreational marine marketplace.”
Visit kicker.com for more.