Fehmi Faytoncu, known as Efe Fehmi, who was born in Balabancılar village of Tekirdağ in 1932, is a man in love with the sea. His grandfather came from Ruse to Istanbul in the First World War and became a coachman for many years. His father studied in Darüşşafaka and later settled in Tekirdağ.
Efe did his military service in the navy. He traveled "half of the world" on a NATO mission. After he finished his military service, he started fishing with the boat his father bought. He lost his wife at an early age and his son recently. He has two daughters and six grandchildren.
A lot has happened to Efe Fehmi in the last four years. He was first diagnosed with laryngeal cancer, and then had three heart attacks and been taken to intensive care each a year apart from the other. Every time he left the hospital, he ran to his shelter and returned to his boat and the sea.
We have been spending time together with Efe Fehmi for two years. His boat is tied to the shelter, he spends most of his time repairing nets. He calls me “my lady daughter” and loves to share his life experiences.
He asked to go fishing together in early September. And we did it. His grandchild Fehmi was at the helm. The next day, he had cataract surgery and two days later returned to the shelter and to the sea.