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Thursday, February 13, 1997 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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`He Loved Driving Boats' -- Three Lost Guardsmen: Kind, Well- Qualified; Survivor From Bremerton `A Gifted Athlete'

Seattle Times Staff Reporter

Petty Officer 2nd Class David Bosley was always a "water person." He loved the water, the ocean, swimming, surfing and fly fishing. He had been in the Coast Guard for more than 11 years. Before that, he had been a radio operator in the Marine Corps.

"He wanted to be in the Coast Guard because he'd rather save lives," said his wife, Sandi Bosley.

Petty Officer Bosley, 36, was born in San Mateo, Calif., the only child of Seraphine Bosley. From age 6 he was an avid swimmer, she said from her home in Foster City, Calif. Throughout school, he participated in sports, including cross-country and track, she said.

He had been stationed at the Quillayute River for three years and was scheduled to be transferred to Oceanside, Calif., this summer.

Petty Officer Bosley went into the military after high school, first joining the Army and then the Marine Corps before the Coast Guard, his mother said.

He had received numerous awards, including the Coast Guard Commendation Medal, a Commandant's Letter of Commendation and the Good Conduct Medal.

He and Sandi Bosley were married in 1982. "He was the most loving, supportive person that I've ever had in my life," Sandi Bosley said. "He was a private person, and yet very personable."

The Bosleys lived in Forks, Clallam County, with two dogs, Lark and Gillie, and a parakeet, Bungi. They would occasionally drive to the town of Sappho, north of Forks, where they would teach the dogs to work with sheep, ducks and cows.

But Petty Officer Bosley's passion was for the water.

"He loved the ocean, he loved driving boats," Sandi Bosley said. "It probably would have been the way he wanted to go."

At 24 -his birthday was Sunday - Petty Officer 3rd Class Matthew Schlimme was the baby of his family. And in just two weeks, after almost four years in the Coast Guard, Petty Officer Schlimme was going to leave the service and move home to the family farm in Whitewater, Mo.

"All of us kids were going to build a house on this land," said his sister, Angie Hendershott.

The Schlimmes are a close-knit family, she said. She, her brother, Andrew, and their parents live near one another, and Petty Officer Schlimme was the only one who wasn't living at home. He joined the Coast Guard after high school, wanting to move from place to place for a while.

He received many awards, including a Commandant's Letter of Commendation and the Good Conduct Medal.

"He got some good training, and he was ready to get home," Hendershott said. "He was ready to settle down."

Petty Officer Schlimme had been interested in joining the police force, but planned first to get a 9-to-5 job and get settled back home, and maybe start a family.

He and his wife, Christina, met at Jackson High School, in Jackson, Mo. Petty Officer Schlimme graduated in 1991, Principal Vernon Huck said.

The two were married three years ago, in a little country church in Tilsit, Mo. It's the same church where they will hold his funeral service, Hendershott said.

"He was a very kind person," she said. "He thought more about anybody else than he did of himself."

Teachers at Snohomish Senior High School remember Seaman Clinton Miniken, 22, as a good, hard-working kid who always tried to do his best.

"He was unassuming, nice and well-mannered," said Tuck Gionet, who taught Seaman Miniken contemporary world issues in his senior year.

Seaman Miniken graduated from Snohomish Senior High School in 1992.

He had been in the Coast Guard for eight months, arriving for duty at the Quillayute River at the end of May. His shipmates called him a "superb performer," and he had qualified as a boat crewman after only three months.

Seaman Apprentice Benjamin Wingo, 19, who survived yesterday's capsizing, graduated last year from Kings West School in Bremerton. A gifted athlete, he was a "fabulous soccer player" in high school, said the school's athletic director, Tom Oliver.

Oliver said Wingo decided last summer to enter the Coast Guard. He enlisted four months ago and qualified as a boat crewman just a

Published Correction Date: 02/14/97 - This Story Ended In Midsentence. The Sentence Regarded The Service Time Of Seaman Apprentice Benjamin Wingo, 19, The Lone Survivor Of The Capsizing. He Enlisted In The Coast Guard Four Months Ago And Qualified As A Boat Crewman Just A Month Ago.

Copyright (c) 1997 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.

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