Below Deck‘s Fraser Olender was asked about the rocky aspects of his past working relationship with Captain Sandy Yawn.
During the Monday, February 5, episode of Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen, Fraser was asked to describe his former coworkers.
When asked about with Sandy, 58, Fraser replied that he learned “a lot,” but ‘kind of got hurt in the making.” He added: “So thank you, Captain Sandy.”
Bravo fans are familiar with the duo’s ups and downs that took place during season 10 of Below Deck when Sandy joined the charter after Captain Lee Rosbach took a step back to address some health issues.
Sandy and Fraser quickly ended up at odds after she fired stews Camille Lamb and Alissa Humber. The captain then claimed Fraser was to blame for the problems in the interior department before calling him a “cancer” affecting St. David.
“The fish stinks at the head and right now you are that head. What you have done is created the worst experience that I have ever experienced on a boat with a chief stew,” she said in a February 2023 episode. “When you have insubordination and just blatant disrespect, I don’t have room for that. It started with Fraser, and it needs to end with Fraser. He lacks respect for authority and he needs to earn my respect back.”
Fraser was emotional after the conversation, which he recalled in a phone call with his mother.
“I was really upset about the way I was spoken to by Captain Sandy, and I voiced my opinion to the rest of the crew. And the captain caught wind of that somehow — and has named me the cancer of the crew,” he said before bursting into tears. “If someone refers to cancer to me ever again — with what I went through with my father — it makes me disgusted. The fact that she thinks so negatively of me makes me feel utterly horrendous.”
Sandy has since walked back her comments in response to backlash from viewers. “I had cancer and I will say this — I should have chosen different words,” she exclusively told Us Weekly in February 2023. “I’ve been a captain for many years [and] those were the terms we used. So, [in terms of] evolving, I would change my terminology for sure. [It was a] bad choice of words.”
Sandy later stood by her assessment of Fraser as a leader.
“There was a moment [where I considered firing him]. Absolutely. Because listen, the walls are thin, and [it is important to not] jump on their bandwagon. Change that narrative. That’s your role as the superior here,” she added. “You’re absolutely responsible for your team. So, I didn’t go to the [interior] team members [with my issues]. I went to the chief stew and said, ‘This isn’t happening. You hired them. Fix it.’”
Lee, 74, ultimately returned to finish out the season. After his official exit from the franchise, Below Deck Adventure‘s Captain Kerry Titheradge stepped up and worked alongside Fraser during season 11 of Below Deck.
“They’re all brilliant in their own right,” Fraser told Us in November 2023 about working with Kerry, Sandy and Lee. “I feel like I grew a lot this season. But I obviously was not given the perfect crew, so that was a struggle. But you’ll see it’s a disaster.”
Fraser also clarified where he and Sandy stand now, adding, “I saw Captain Sandy in London about three weeks ago. Of course, we get along. This happened so long ago. People think it’s all current. It happened two years ago.”
Below Deck airs on Bravo Mondays at 9 p.m. ET.