Inside Below Deck Stars Malia White And Captain Sandy's Friendship

"Below Deck Mediterranean" star Malia White quickly became a fan-favorite crew member after her start on the show in season two. Since her first appearance on the "Below Deck" franchise, White has leveled up, returning for seasons five and six of "Med" to serve as the bosun on the crew. In a mostly male-dominated field, climbing the ranks isn't easy, but White wasn't doing it alone; she had a mentor to look up to.

It was on White's first season, on the yacht Sirocco, sailing along the coast of Croatia, that the ambitious deckhand met Captain Sandy Yawn, who would soon become a friend and mentor for years to come. White and Yawn formed a tentative working relationship during White's first season, and Yawn continued to support White as she aspired to a higher position in the crew. The two women bonded over the hardships that face women in the yachting industry, which resulted in a friendship and mentorship that is a treat to watch on Bravo.

Yawn is supportive of White's career in yachting

Captain Sandy Yawn is a fixture in the "Below Deck" franchise, as well as the only female captain to be featured across all of the different series. With her no-nonsense attitude and incredible work ethic, many of the different crew members have looked up to her over the years as proof that they could one day be in a leadership position like her. Malia White was one of those crew members, and Sandy's leadership inspired White to further her career in yachting. Not only did White become the first female bosun in the "Below Deck" franchise, but she also continued and received her certification for Officer of the Watch in January 2023, making her one of the highest-ranking members of the "Below Deck" shows.

Yawn has been a support for White throughout her yachting career, encouraging her to chase her dreams. Yawn shared her opinion on White's future in the industry with Us Weekly in 2022.

"I'm so proud of her. I thought she would be a great captain [since season two] because she can address an issue head on without anger and diffuse it. I witnessed her diffuse conversations and that's why Malia is going to make a great leader."

White almost married Yawn and her fiancee

While Malia White has admitted that Captain Sandy Yawn is a big inspiration in her professional life, White and Yawn have also become close in their personal lives. Over the years, White has grown close with Yawn and her fiancee, Leah Shafer; so much so that White was in the running to marry the couple at their long-awaited wedding. However, White's opportunity to officiate at Yawn's ceremony was not meant to be.

"I was supposed to officiate it [Sandy's wedding] until someone stole my spot," White revealed in a November 2023 interview with Us Weekly while promoting season three of Bravo's "Winter House," of which White was a cast member. While she may not be the one uniting Yawn and Shafer in holy matrimony, that won't stop White from celebrating with the couple.

"I'm definitely going to the wedding," she continued. "Captain Sandy's always been a mentor and she continues to be and Leah is amazing. We [White and Katie Flood, chief stew on 'Below Deck Mediterranean' and 'Winter House' alum] see them quite often, actually."