Page 1

News-Times Whidbey


Liftoff for PBY-Naval Air Museum A12

WEDNESDAY, JULY 30, 2014 | Vol. 124, No. 59 | WWW.WHIDBEYNEWSTIMES.COM | 75¢

Navy man short of pullup record, but pulls in $9,600

Treasurer candidates discuss accuracy, work ethic

Attempt lands McCastle in hospital, but he has no regrets By JANIS REID Staff reporter


At about pullup number 2,100 Saturday, Navy Petty Officer Michael McCastle began to experience muscle tears in his forearms and capillaries were bursting on his skin. He decided then to do 1,000 more. A total of 3,202 pullups after starting, McCastle was transferred to Providence Regional Medical Center in

Staff reporter

Sea Star Wasting Syndrome Map No Symptoms Symptoms Observed

Oak Harbor


This map shows the locations on Whidbey and Camano islands where apparently diseased starfish have been discovered. Below, a provided photo of starfish by diver Jan Kocian.




Sara to g a a Pa ss

Port Susan


iralt y Inl et


Photo by Janis Reid/Whidbey News-Times

The hands of Navy Petty Officer Michael McCastle are treated with chalk for blisters.


Candidates challenging incumbent Island County Treasurer Ana Maria Nuñez said they can do a better job handling the county’s money. Nuñez’s former chief deputy Wanda Grone filed to run for the seat last month and was immediately fired by Nuñez. “I’ve learned now how to run a treasurer’s office,” Grone said. “I’m honest. I work hard.” The third candidate, title and escrow manager Christa Canell, said she’s running because of complaints she’s heard from former clients about mistakes made by the treasurer’s office. “Things aren’t running properly,” Canell said. “I’ve managed an office. In escrow accounting, you don’t have room for error.” Despite the political jabs she’s receiving from her opponents, Nuñez maintains that she has done many positive things while in office and wants the chance to do more. “To be a good treasurer, you have to open yourself up, you have to really believe in what you are doing and that you want to make a difference,” Nuñez said. Nuñez, a Democrat, has worked in government accounting for more than 16 years as a Department of Defense employee. She was appointed as the treasurer’s chief deputy prior to winning the top role in 2010. She is a licensed certified public accountant and has a master’s degree in accounting and financial management. “Running again was not an easy decision, but I believe I can still make a difference,” Nuñez said. “Four years is a start, it’s not a finish.” One main criticism stems

Greenbank Holmes Harbor

Langley WHIDBEY ISLAND Source: University of California Santa Cruz Pacific Rocky Intertidal Monitoring


Everett Monday after spending two days at Whidbey General Hospital. While McCastle stopped 828 short of surpassing the Guinness World Record for number of pullups in 24 hours, he said the attempt — and exposure it’s given to the Wounded Warrior Project — was worth it. McCastle said he also discovered something about himself. “I found that even when I feel I’ve reached my limit, I’m only at 40 percent of what I’m capable of,” McCastle said Monday. “After that event, I don’t think anything is impossible.” SEE PULLUPS, A15

Awful waste

Starfish deaths puzzling experts By JANIS REID Staff reporter

Starfish are among Charlie Seablom’s favorite aquatic animals to discover. As a volunteer for the Island County Beach Watchers organization since 1993, Seablom has started to see alarming changes in his favorite sea creature. “The ones I’m seeing, a very large percentage appear to be diseased,” Seablom said. The pisaster sea star typically has five limbs and comes in a wide variety of colors. The orange-colored sunflower starfish grows to be far bigger, can have up to 24 legs and can “run” quite quickly. Over the past year, a number of dying starfish were reported off the coasts of Whidbey and Camano islands. This year is the first in which Seablom has seen any of the wasted sea stars on Whidbey. Seablom said he’s been on the lookout since the first symptoms were reported in June 2013 by SEE WASTING AWAY, A15

Whidbey News-Times, July 30, 2014  
Whidbey News-Times, July 30, 2014  

July 30, 2014 edition of the Whidbey News-Times