BY GREGG HOLSHOUSER
For The Sun News
September 11, 2015
Having grown up on the Garden City point, the peninsula on the beach side of Murrells Inlet, Stephen Goldfinch Jr. was immersed in saltwater at an early age.
Growing up in a family with an affinity for diving and spearfishing, Goldfinch’s first diving experience came at the age of 5, when he helped his father, Steve, at the 10-Mile Reef.
“I still remember him letting go of me to stick a flounder in the square holes of the barge,” Goldfinch said.
Goldfinch, now 32, has since gone on approximately 5,000 dives on the ledges and artificial reefs off the South Carolina coast, including over 1,000 on deep-water locations in depths of over 130 feet.
Clearly, diving and spearfishing is a tradition that runs deep in the Goldfinch family.
His now-deceased grandparents, Mac and Maribel Goldfinch, took part in family dive outings at over 80 years of age and his deceased uncle, Will Goldfinch, is memorialized by a brass angel hidden among the wreckage on the Goldfinch Reef, located about 20 miles offshore in 60 feet of water between Murrells Inlet and Georgetown.
There is a plaque on the reef site dedicating it to Maribel and Will Goldfinch.
Aside from his diving exploits, Goldfinch is an experienced offshore fisherman, both trolling and bottom fishing. Goldfinch is familiar with the status of the numerous species of fish, both pelagic and reef fish, found off the coast from perspectives above and below the waves.