More than 2,000 people have signed an online petition calling for the reinstatement of a lifeboat coxswain.
Tom Clark, who has served with the lifeboat service for 34 years, has been "permanently stood down" after he held a training exercise in Scarborough without permission.
The petition states Mr Clark has "worked hard serving the public in dangerous situations on the sea".
The RNLI has said a "major breach of policy" could not be ignored.
The petition, created on Wednesday with a target of 3,000 signatures, said "Scarborough lifeboat needs Tom Clark" and called for him to be reinstated.
Mr Clark said he has "got big broad shoulders" and will "go back and finish the job I started" if he is reinstated.
He previously said the exercise, held for the benefit of two trainee coxswains on 29 October, had the "blessing and clearance" of the lifeboat operations manager and several others.
His son and an RNLI member accompanied the crew on the trip after the "last minute" absence of two crew members, he said.
Mr Clark was appointed an MBE for services to the RNLI in 2016.
An RNLI spokeswoman previously said: "We recognise the long service dedicated to the charity, however the RNLI expects its crew members to behave professionally - not just in terms of maritime expertise, but also in behaviour and respect for others - and to carry out their role with due care and diligence at all times.
"A major breach of policy can cause unnecessary risk to life and, therefore, cannot be ignored."