1IN MEMORIAM - CAPTAIN MICKEY VASSALLO 1941-2007 MELCHIOR JOSEPH 'CAPTAIN MICKEY' VASSALLO, 66, of Belmar, NJ passed away Sunday, March 11, 2007 surrounded by his family after a courageous battle with cancer. Born in Brooklyn, NY, Mickey and family moved to Belmar in 1951. Captain Mickey Vassallo discovered his passion for fishing and the sea at the age of 9. He owned and operated the CAPT. JOE II, a commercial fishing boat, with his father. He dedicated the next 57 years of his life to teaching people how to fish, loving what he did, and loving those he taught. Captain Mickey ran many charter boats out of Belmar throughout his career, spending his last several years working on the OL SALTY II.
He is survived by his three daughters, Connie Gutierrez and her husband Sandro, Teresa Vassallo and her fiance Michael Galati, and Susan Vassallo; a sister, Maria Moynihan and her husband Daniel; and four grandchildren, Amanda, William, Alicia and Alex. Our hearts and prayers go out to his family during this troubling time.
A Mass was offered on Thursday, March 15, 2007 at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, Asbury Park, NJ. On Saturday, March 24, family and friends gathered aboard Captain Nick Caruso's OL SALTY II and Captain Mickey's ashes were committed to the sea at a location he chose before his passing.
Captain Dave Bogan Sr., a longtime friend of Captain Mickey, graciously sent a few recent photos of Mickey doing what he liked best... fishing.
2CAPT. JOE II, Belmar, NJ – 1964 Nice and clean! The "CAPT. JOE II" on the very day (April 17, 1964) she arrived at Belmar, NJ from Gillikin Boatworks, Harkers Island, NC. The hull was built of long-leaf yellow pine framing with two-inch mahogany planking and a two-inch cut select edge-grain fir deck. The boat was white over-all with green trim and varnished mahogany transom. Captain Joe Vassallo skippered her and later, his son Captain Mickey Vassallo took over the business. Captain Mickey was the first in the New Jersey/New York party boat fleet to introduce winter "Magic Hours" fishing (4:00 PM to 9:00 PM) for Whiting (Silver Hake). Captain Mickey passed away in 2007 and the boat later sailed as the "VIKING KING", the "STARFISH", and the "SEAHORSE" and is now sailing as the "CAPTAIN MIDNIGHT" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, NY.
3CAPTAIN JOE II Fare Ticket, Belmar, NJ – 1979 The "CAPTAIN JOE II" sailed from Belmar, NJ and was owned and operated by father and son Captains Joseph and Mickey Vassallo. Captain Mickey Vassallo introduced late afternoon/early evening 'magic hours' Whiting (Silver Hake) fishing to the party boat fleet. The Whiting, the "CAPTAIN JOE II" and Captain Mickey are all gone now, but the innovation of 'magic hours' fishing still continues to be a favorite among local anglers.
4Captain Mickey fishing in Florida Captain Mickey got this Sheepshead in the Indian River near Sabastian, FL. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
5Captain Mickey fishing in Florida Captain Mickey with a Snapper and a Grouper. His friend "Big Jim" is in the middle and Dave Bogan Jr. is on the right. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
6Captain Mickey fishing in Florida Captain Mickey with a Red Snapper. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
7Captain Mickey fishing in Florida Captain Dave Bogan Sr. gaffed this Lane Snapper for Captain Mickey. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
8Captain Mickey fishing in Florida Captain Mickey with Frank Terranova of Forked River, NJ and a nice mess of Red Snapper. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
9Captain Mickey fishing in Florida Captain Mickey and Matt Fahmie of Orchid Isle, FL show off their catch of Snapper and Grouper. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
10Captain Mickey fishing in Florida Captain Mickey with a really nice Red Snapper. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
11Captain Mickey fishing in Florida Captain Mickey and friend Bobby Jacobsen pose with a Mutton Snapper and Spanish Mackeral at the dock at Sabastion, FL. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
12Captain Mickey fishing in Florida Captain Mickey holds up a nice pair of Snapper on the way back from a fishing trip. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.
13Captain Mickey havin' a fling with the Ling "I come all the way to Florida to catch a Ling!" You can only imagine the expletives that Captain Mickey uttered. Photo courtesy of Captain Dave Bogan Sr.