Growing up on the shores of Monterey Bay, Capitola native Larry Bertolucci was drawn to the sea. As a youth, he worked on the Capitola Wharf, helping with the fishing and boating concessions. Yet despite his love of fishing, Bertolucci worked for thirty-three years as a fireman, providing better security for his family.
However, the ocean continued to beckon, and eventually Bertolucci succumbed, buying what he laughingly remembers as “a ski boat with poles” and joining the Monterey Bay fleet of part-time salmon fishermen. It wasn’t long before the ski boat was replaced by a 24-foot fiberglass Fiberform, and Captain Bertolucci was spending all of his free time fishing for salmon, trailering his small boat to ports as far north as Fort Bragg. On the Fiberform, he found that he simply loved being out on the water, and discovered a passion for fishing for albacore.
Finally, in 1990 Bertolucci retired from the fire department. With an airline pilot for a partner, he bought the 42-foot fiberglass F/V Golden Girl, a Vega Fishing Boat built in 1978 in San Pedro, and turned to commercial fishing full time. Before long, he bought out the partner and was pursuing his dream. On the Golden Girl, Captain Bertolucci fishes for salmon, albacore and, beginning in 2010, black cod.
Captain Bertolucci has been married to Clara since 1989. He has two grown children. While both his son and daughter fished with him when they were in their teens, for them it was just a means of quick spare cash, they did not feel the same lure of the sea that beckoned to their father.
Although now mostly retired, Captain Bertolucci is grateful for his years at sea, and credits commercial fishing with allowing him the opportunity to see sights and experience things he would never have known otherwise.