Local tow boat company celebrates 30 years

BELHAVEN, N.C. (WITN) – A local business in the east is celebrating a milestone – 30 years in operation.

Axson Smith Jr. owner of Tow Boat US River Forest, says his boating company has served the local boating community since 1993. Routine tows, rescues, and even removing hazardous boat debris from eastern Carolina rivers have been part of their initiatives.

His son, Axson Smith III serves as one of the boat captains and a service manager for the company.

The father and son spoke about some of the past rescues they’ve performed and the fulfillment that comes from the work they do.

“It’s good to service the public. And I have never got to a boat that someone was unhappy to see us,” said Smith Jr.

“Some duck hunters in like 2012 that were just past the bridge coming into Belhaven capsized their boat, all three of them were soaking wet. I found the two guys those two guys were borderline hypothermic. We’ve seen 50-foot boats running aground and sink,” shared Axson Smith III.

Smith Jr. says the Smith Family has operated the River Forest Marina in Beaufort County since 1947.