NewsInspiring South Florida


Charter fishing captain with cerebral palsy becomes crowd favorite

Posted at 3:57 PM, Sep 06, 2021

Like many in West Palm Beach, Michael Mummert grew up on the water.

"On the boat everyday I never had a babysitter the boat was my babysitter pretty much," said Mummert.

Mummert’s dad, he says played a huge role in pushing him to live beyond his disability, cerebral palsy.

"I was never allowed to say no or I can’t or anything like that. I’d look at my dad to help me and he’d say well how hard did you try?" explained Mummert.

That "can do" attitude led Mummert to horseback riding, dirt bikes, baseball and everything in between, including fishing.

He got a job as a dockhand as a teenager where he met the owner of Reel Intense Fishing Charters Captain Weston Russell.

“He would come up to me and say I would like to work with you guys and I would tell him Michael we only have licensed captains,” says Russell.

Becoming licensed is no small task and includes nautical and fishing knowledge, and physical assessments.

“You need a lot of hours on the water and you need to be able to fish and fishing isn’t something you just read a book about, it really takes years and years and years to become a good fisherman,” says Russell.

“It was 100% the hardest thing in ever done in my life,” adds Mummert.

But sure enough, 3 months later he came back with a captain’s license in hand, this time as an employee of Reel Intense Fishing.

He carries out his job with perseverance and a good sense of humor.

“Guys just so you guys know I’m not drunk I have cerebral palsy alright let’s get that off the table,” says Mummert with a smile.

He’s quickly become a customer favorite and an award winning fisherman when he’s not working and inspiring others

“The biggest thing I can have someone take away from this is don’t make any excuses and just do what you have do to get it done at the end of the day,” says Mummert.

He proves your only setback is a negative attitude.