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Crash kills Airboat Tour Operator - New Orleans Veteran



Crash kills Airboat Tour Operator - New Orleans Veteran

South Florida Sun-Sentinel

May 27, 2007

Richard Douse, of Loxahatchee, died at Delray Medical Center Friday following an auto accident on State Road 80. Douse owned Florida Airboat Tours, which offers guided tours of the Everglades, and ran Palm Beach Recovery.

The Ford F-450, Douse was driving struck a Honda Accord before Douse's truck flipped repeatedly and landed upright on the shoulder of the eastbound lanes.

Douse's family and friends were reluctant to comment about the accident. But Scott Sprague, a friend who worked with Douse at Florida Airboat Tours, said he and Douse joined a flotilla of about 30 airboaters from southeast Florida to help with rescues in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina and did the same in Florida after the spate of hurricanes two seasons ago.

"We've dealt with everything out there [in New Orleans] and we did this after the hurricanes," Sprague said. "When it hits home, it's a different ball game."

The accident was unusual in some respects. The stretch of State Road 80 was flat, visibility was good and traffic was light because of an earlier wreck near Seminole Pratt Whitney Road that left one person dead another in critical condition, FHP Lt. Tim Frith said.

Investigators are uncertain what caused the crash or who was at fault.

Maria Herrera can be reached at meherrera@sun-sentinel.com or 561-243-6544.
He coulda just fallen asleep at the wheel - It's so easy to do on a long straight stretch or road like that.

I never knew the guy but his website is still up and running - I learned something new today from it.

It's a loss to the airboating community for sure.

Condolences to his family and all the fellow area 2 boaters.

Captain Dick was a friend of mine and will be missed. He was kind of a hard-assed businessman, but you do what ya gotta do to get paid. Once you got him away from his business he was a different guy. I was shocked to hear about his passing. My condolences to his family and friends.
This is sad, is this our first S.A. member to pass? Also hard to believe that an F-450 would not just keep on rolling when involved with a rice-burning car?

AB4fun, Would loved to have met him. Anybody that hold creatures that close to thier heart. Also, I've bookmarked the "Sanctuary", will try to keep the phone number handy cause I've needed it several times in the years gone by.


as we plant oak trees, mow the grass edge the sidewalks and basically shine the Youth Camp up for the next generation Sunday morning in the JW corbett our prayers will be with Mr. Douse.
Then we will go to Busch wildlife in Jupiter to pay our respect to our fellow air -boater
and conservationist. I hope you all will join us!