Edwin Marks was an active member for many years before retiring to Florida. With 35 Merit Marks and 60 years as a dues-paying member, Ed was one of Oyster Bay Sail & Power Squadron’s initial members. -Ann Peltier
Kenneth F. Schmitt of Madison, Wisconsin, died peacefully on May 15, 2021. He was born in 1927 in Madison to Carol (Docken) Schmitt and Kenneth F. Schmitt, Sr., where he later learned to sail on Lake Mendota with his brother, David T. Schmitt. Ken graduated from Wisconsin High before serving in the Navy from 1946 – 1947. He attended the University of Wisconsin and graduated from Northwestern Dental School. He was an Associate Professor at the Dental School for many years and later Director of Scientific Programs at the Chicago Dental Society.
Ken loved sailing – on the Brigantine Yankee with Captain Irving Johnson, Chicago – Mackinac races, Bermuda races, the North Channel of Lake Huron, out of Wilmette Harbor on Lake Michigan, sailing across the Atlantic Ocean and on his Ketch, “Un Bel Di.”
Ken was predeceased by his brother Dave and is survived by his son David Schmitt, daughter Deborah Carlson (Greg), daughter Barbara Perce (Hyde), grandchildren, Erik Schmitt (Rachel), Michael Schmitt (Elizabeth), Henry Carlson, Clara Carlson, Morgan Perce, Grant Perce and great grandchildren, Charlotte Schmitt, Bowden Schmitt and Bastiaan Schmitt as well as beloved nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews.
P/C Cornelius P. McGinley, AP, was a longtime member of America’s Boating Club-Delaware Valley. He was a past commander, historian, flag lieutenant and advisor. We will miss him. -Rhoda M. Refsin
P/C Robert Adamczyk, JN, passed away on Father’s Day, June 20, 2021. Bob was with his wife, Jeannine, and his daughters Cynthia, Wendy and Lori at his bedside.
Bob served as commander in 2010 and was currently the administrative officer; he was a good friend and faithful, proud member of the Chicago Sail & Power Squadron (America’s Boating Club of Chicago). -Janice M. North
During the two months we cruised southeast Alaska aboard For Pete’s Sake, we covered 2,200 nautical miles, visited virtually every community, and navigated most of the area’s remote and rarely visited passages.
On a near-daily basis, we experienced stunning encounters with nature, land and sea animals, and Alaskan individuals. We would like to share five of the most interesting and challenging destinations:
- Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Refuge
- Misty Fjords National Monument
- Glacier Bay National Park
- Rocky Pass
- El Capitan Passage
Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Refuge
Our first anchorage, at the head of the Khutzeymateen Inlet, followed two days of final preparation in Prince Rupert, British Columbia, the starting and ending point of our cruise.
Despite being wet and cool, the early days of May in northwest British Columbia and southeast Alaska proved quite beautiful. On the relatively short leg from Prince Rupert to Duncan Bay and up Chatham Sound, our most challenging navigation involved transiting the narrow, winding channels north of Digby Island, past the native community of Metlakatla on the Tsimpsean Peninsula.
After traveling north up Chatham Sound and Main Passage, we turned northeast toward Portland Inlet. On the far southeast end of Portland Inlet, we entered Steamer Passage traveling northeast. Next, we entered Khutzeymateen Inlet to the east.
To access the Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Refuge via Khutzeymateen Inlet, you usually have to request entrance from the ranger station on the inlet’s north side. Since it was early in the season, we contacted the rangers via VHF radio to advise them of our entrance. Later in the season, entry is generally limited to authorized guide services.
The deep, scenic inlet offers few anchoring options. We anchored at the head of the inlet in about 40 feet of water. A designated grizzly sanctuary, the inlet and refuge have the largest concentration of grizzlies along the British Columbia coast. Outside Alaska, the term “grizzly bear” identifies what is more correctly called the brown bear. Different varieties of brown bear include the Kodiak bear, a large brown bear found primarily on Kodiak Island.
Before tucking in for the evening, we kayaked in a cold drizzle, watched a couple of grizzly bears on shore, enjoyed a salmon and crab omelet, and played Yahtzee. The next morning, we exited the inlet slowly. We had two grizzly sightings on our way to Foggy Bay, the preferred layover on the way to Ketchikan.
Misty Fjords National Monument
From Ketchikan, we navigated southeast down Tongass Narrows into Revillagigedo Channel. From there, we transited the northeast side of Annette Island. Then, we turned northeast into the double-ended Behm Canal loop’s southeast entrance. Behm Canal is the only boat access to Misty Fjords National Monument.
At the end of our four-day adventure in Misty Fjords, we exited from the canal’s other end to return to Ketchikan.
During our earlier two-day stopover in Ketchikan, we’d acquired a slinged 12-gauge shotgun, slugs and buckshot rounds in case we encountered grizzlies while hiking. Although we never discharged the gun, we had our closest grizzly encounter while hiking the trail to Punchbowl Lake.
On the first day in Misty Fjords, we anchored in Punchbowl Cove, southeast off Rudyerd Bay, on the far east side of Behm Canal. On the way there, we saw whales and dolphins and passed New Eddystone Rock. The rock rises 237 feet above the water in the middle of the canal.
After anchoring, we kayaked to shore and hiked up to Punchbowl Lake on challenging seldom-hiked trails. We spooked a grizzly, but he wasn’t interested in us. Once back on the boat, we saw a big grizzly roaming around at our kayak-landing point.
Pulling anchor early the next morning, we headed back to Behm Canal to continue our trip north farther into Misty Fjords. Motoring slowly, we entered Walker Cove to enjoy one of our drift breakfasts. We saw a grizzly sow with three cubs on shore.
We encountered an orca at the entrance to Fitzgibbon Cove, at the far northeast area of Behm Canal, where we anchored on our second night.
On the third day, we voyaged southwest through Behm Narrows, along the south side of Bell Island, to our night’s anchorage in Yes Bay. After kayaking ashore, we hiked the remains of an old tramway to Lake McDonald.
Following a supper of poached salmon, we ended the evening sitting atop the boat. Together we relaxed, sipping scotch and smoking a pipe while gazing at the sky. We were very much alone.
During our fourth day, we made the southern transit of Behm Canal to complete our circumnavigation of Revillagigedo Island. Then we returned to Ketchikan for supplies.
One of the most rewarding portions of our trip, the cool, damp Misty Fjords was worth every bit of effort.
Glacier Bay National Park
Located on Glacier Bay’s west side, a little over halfway between Bartlett Cove (the park check-in station) and Margerie Glacier (the park’s northern-most navigational point at the head of Tarr Inlet), Blue Mouse Cove provides a well-protected anchorage nestled off the southeast end of Gilbert Peninsula. We anchored in about 45 feet in the cove’s southeast area, surrounded by mountains with heavy snowfields.
The next morning, we stroked northwest in our kayak before dragging across a mussel shoal and into the top northwest end of Hugh Miller Inlet.
Now floating again, we paddled west across the top of Hugh Miller Inlet. We passed a lone unnamed island into the narrows at Gilbert Peninsula’s southwest corner. Pitch-black wolves with piercing green eyes lined each shore of the calm, beautiful narrows.
After passing through the narrows, we entered Skidmore Bay, a designated wilderness area restricted to non-motorized
craft. We floated southeast along the shoreline, slowly absorbing the pristine wilderness.
A wolf swam across the bay toward the shore to our left and crossed directly in front of our kayak. Scrambling for our camera, we managed to capture only enough to share proof. With our attention focused on the crossing wolf, we didn’t immediately notice the other wolves gathered along the shore where the wolf exited the water.
Continuing with amazement, we rounded the southwest end of Gilbert Peninsula, heading northeast across the top of Hugh Miller Inlet. On our way back to the mussel shoal, we beached at a small island to take in the area from the land.
The tide had been ebbing during our adventure, and now we had to drag the kayak over what seemed like a near-football field of mussel shells before we could stroke toward For Pete’s Sake, which looked small in the distance. We spent another appreciative night at anchor in Blue Mouse Cove before heading up to Margerie Glacier the next morning.
The northernmost point of our whole trip, Margerie Glacier was awesome. In Tarr Inlet, we had an interesting but friendly encounter with a 936-foot cruise ship. To the captain of the massive ship, we must have been indistinguishable from the icebergs. He radioed to tell us he would swing 180 degrees to give everyone on board a view of the glacier. We asked if someone could take a picture of our boat and email it to us. Someone onboard took our picture as the ship cruised past on its way out of Tarr Inlet.
Since this was For Pete’s Sake’s second voyage to southeast Alaska, the crew felt comfortable tackling Rocky Pass. As explained in the guidebook “Exploring Southeast Alaska”: “…Rocky Pass is a wild place, so proceed accordingly and enjoy your exploration.”
The day before, we’d transited from Baranof Warm Springs, down Chatham Sound, around the southwest tip of Admiralty Island and east across Frederick Sound to the native community of Kake on northwest Kupreanof Island. Noted for heavy seas, the passage lived up to its reputation. The seas approached 10 feet and didn’t flatten until we approached Kake, where we refueled and docked for the evening.
Likely the most remote navigable area in southeast Alaska, Rocky Pass separates Kuiu Island to the west and Kupreanof Island to the east. Departing Kake early, we transited southeast down the northeast side of Keku Strait. We eventually entered a narrow channel, keeping Point Hamilton on Kupreanof to port and Hound Island to starboard. Once through, we continued south. We passed Salt Point Light to port off Kupreanof and headed southeast toward Entrance Island, keeping it to port. Then we threaded ourselves into Rocky Pass — as remote and as quiet as it gets.
Like many longer southeast Alaska passages, Rocky Pass floods from both ends and ebbs from near-middle. It’s best to enter it a couple hours before high-slack tide, allowing for moderate and near-transit-direction currents. Protected by Kupreanof and Kuiu islands, the flat waters and the near shores provide an unparalleled encounter with the Alaskan wilderness. Once you find your way inside Rocky Pass and proceed with due diligence, the comfortable transit proves well worth the effort.
We discovered two notable chokepoints. As we transited south, the first came between Summit and Kuiu islands. We encountered the more challenging one approaching and navigating around Devils Elbow and Eagle Island, near the south end of the pass. At first, we couldn’t tell to which side we should proceed; neither side looked any better than the other. After a good study of the charts, the route became clear. We would travel east across the top (north) of Devils Elbow and south between Eagle and Kupreanof islands.
Rocky Pass gradually widened into its parent flow, Keku Strait, and emptied us south into Sumner Strait. Then, we transited a short distance southeast to Point Baker, a tiny fishing port on the northwest point of Prince of Wales Island.
We refueled and headed to our day’s destination, the infamous southeast Alaska community of Port Protection, immediately south and around the corner from Point Baker. We had timed our arrival to hopefully experience the community’s historic Summer Solstice Party. When we arrived, the residents said they weren’t planning to celebrate as they had in the past. As it turns out, they threw a party anyway after realizing that folks actually timed their trips to be in Port Protection for the solstice. The next day was epic, with hardcore fishermen jamming and relaxing.
El Capitan Passage
After the epic Port Protection Solstice Party, we traveled a short distance down the west coast of Prince of Wales Island and anchored for the evening at Hole in the Wall. Enroute, we kayaked an unnamed backwater bay directly south of Port Protection. Eerie channels, derelict ships, primitive lodgings, and sea asparagus were our rewards. We enjoyed a quiet, comfortable evening anchorage, which was followed by the next morning’s near-immediate exit into the big waters of Sumner Strait.
Continuing south down Sumner Strait, we turned southeast at Shakan Bay towards Shakan Strait. We went around the southern shore of Hamilton Island, northeast past Fontaine Island to port, and into El Capitan Passage to the northeast. Initially, the passage tracks northeast to its northern-most point and turns southeast to enter the short and narrow Dry Pass, part of El Capitan Passage. Then, the passage knifes its way between Kosciusko Island and the mainland of Prince of Wales Island, first east over the top of Kosciusko then eventually turning south to provide passage to Sea Otter Sound.
Shorter than Rocky Pass and a bit less remote, El Capitan Passage was equally challenging and beautiful. In fact, as long as you avoid the hazards, you can nearly touch the southeast Alaskan wilderness from your deck in this remote, well-protected passage.
Just east of Dry Pass, on Prince of Wales Island, sits El Capitan Cave. A U.S. Forest Services dock and short trail provide access to the cave entrance. After we arrive at Craig, our destination, we will arrange for a guided USFS tour of the cave.
On the way to Craig, we stopped at the small village of Naukati Bay. While there, we hiked and visited the native communities on Prince of Wales Island.
After spending five nights in Craig and visiting El Capitan Cave, we headed back to our starting point of Prince Rupert, British Columbia, the end of our southeast Alaska cruise. From there, we trailered the boat home to Blaine, Washington.
Bellingham Power Squadron members Peter and Susan Werner live and harbor their boat For Pete’s Sake in Blaine, Washington. After retiring in 2006, Peter hauled For Pete’s Sake to Blaine from Wisconsin, principally to navigate the Inside Passage to Alaska. He completed that first trip in 2007. Susan and Peter married in 2016 and took For Pete’s Sake to Alaska again. Peter has been a boater since his early teens, and Susan and he spend much of the summer boating in the San Juan and Canadian Gulf islands and kayaking, hiking, and crabbing along the British Columbia coast.
Devohn Durban Rhame Jr., 91, of Raleigh, North Carolina, passed away on Thursday, June 17, 2021, at home.
Devohn was born on April 5, 1930, to Devohn Durban Rhame, Sr. and Leonie Frances Duncan Rhame in Summerville, South Carolina, and grew up in Summerville, Charleston, Beaufort, and Denmark, South Carolina. After graduating from Denmark High School in 1947, he enlisted in the United States Air Force in 1950, served as a Radar operator in Washington State during the Korean War, and was honorably discharged in 1954. He went on to study at the Citadel in Charleston as a veteran student in 1955, graduating with a B.S. in Civil Engineering in 1958.
After graduation, Devohn worked as a bridge engineer with the Bureau of Public Roads, later named the Federal Highway Administration, starting in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. He was involved with the design of over 30 bridges, including the bridges on the Gatlinburg Bypass. After a 31-year career, he retired in 1990.
He wed Lucy Naomi Hoffmeyer of Florence, South Carolina, on November 14, 1959, and they had three children, Melissa, Stephanie, and Durban.
Devohn was an active member of Hudson Memorial Presbyterian Church since 1971, teaching Sunday School, planning “fifth Sunday lunches,” and serving as an elder, a deacon, and a greeter. He also enjoyed the ROMEO (Really Old Men Eating Out) men’s group that met once a week.
Devohn greatly enjoyed boating and was an active member of the United States Power Squadron for many years. He served as commander of the Raleigh Power Squadron in 1986, taught boating courses, and planned numerous multi-day boating trips along the Intracoastal Waterway.
Devohn also enjoyed travel with his wife and family in the U.S. and Canada and was always happy to talk about his visits to places such as Puerto Rico, Quebec, Yosemite National Park, and San Antonio.
Devohn is survived by his wife, his sister Janice Eleanor Rhame Lockridge, his three children, and four grandchildren, Rebecca, Christopher, Sophie, and Owen.
A memorial service was held for Devohn at Hudson Memorial Presbyterian Church on Saturday, June 26 at 1 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family requested that memorial donations be given to the Hudson Memorial Presbyterian Church Fellowship Fund or to North Raleigh Ministries.
Share this Story
Neil Robert Thomas, husband and father, passed away at the age of 94 on May 29, 2021. He was born in New Rochelle, New York, son of Ruth Marion Eklund and grandson of Joseph and Sarah McNeill.
Neil graduated from FE Bellows High School, enlisted US Maritime Service, left as second class seaman. In 1945, he joined Esso, and voyaged on their ships to Europe, the Mediterranean, and coastline of the Americas. On returning to land in 1951, he went to work for American Cyanamid, retiring in 1983. In 1952, he married his beloved Ruth Edna (Schmaus) Thomas in Mount Vernon, New York. With employment in Connecticut, Neil and Ruth made their home in Greenwich.
Neil was drawn by the sea and so the Thomas navy had many fine vessels: S-boat, a 27-foot Herreshoff, on which Neil brought Ruth for cruises on Long Island Sound, that being Ruth’s introduction to sailing and the incentive for a sympathetic friend to gift Ruth a copy of the book “I Married a Boat” on their first anniversary; Escape, the wooden lifeboat Neil decked to make a racing cruiser; Aeolus, a 19-foot Flying Scot for racing; Caprice, a 26-foot classic Quincy Adams for racing; Gannet, a 30-foot Etchells for racing; Cryogenic, a 10-foot Dyer for winter racing; an unnamed Sunfish for a few seasons; Jibe-ho, the 36-foot trawler in which Neil and Ruth cruised the eastern seaboard and waterways from Canada to the Caribbean with a trusting cat along as passenger.
Neil joined the U.S. Power Squadron 1952, was a member of Greenwich Sail & Power Squadron for 62 years and achieved the rank of Junior Navigator. He was a member of the Old Greenwich Boat Club, and the Riverside Yacht Club.
Neil was predeceased by Ruth; they are buried together next to his grandparents in Bronxville, New York. Ruth and Neil are survived by their children, Karen Varbaro and Neil R Thomas Jr.
Share this Story
P/CJoseph T. Domsic Jr. passed away on Thursday, May 27, 2021 in his home following an illness. He was born on November 11, 1957 in Chicago Heights, IL, to the late Joseph and Marguerite (Watts) Domsic Sr., and was 63 years old at the time of his death.
Joe was a retired supervisor with I/N Tek in New Carlisle. On October 25, 1980 he married the love of his life, Diana White, in Portage, IN. He was a member of St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Walkerton, the United States Power Squadron where he also served as commander for several years, and a past member of the United Steel Workers Union.
Joe is survived by his loving wife Diana of Walkerton; two sons Thomas Domsic of Walkerton and Matthew (Amber) Domsic of Valparaiso; one brother Michael (Teresa) Domsic; and two sisters Eileen (Jack) Stachler and Elizabeth (Donald) Baier. He is preceded in death by his parents.
Funeral services were held on Wednesday, June 2, 2021, at the Rannells Funeral Home, Koontz Lake Chapel. A visitation was also held Wednesday, also at the funeral home. With Joe’s love of boating the family requested that everyone wear Hawaiian shirts to the funeral home. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to Center for Hospice. To leave online condolences visit rannellsfh.com.
To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store. Published in South Bend Tribune on May 30, 2021.
Share this Story
Lt John W. Northrup was a member of Pompano Beach Sail & Power Squadron for 64 years when he passed away at age 95. He is survived by his loving wife P/D/Lt/C Evelyn Northrup, AP.
Share this Story
Jack Alexander, AP, died May 28, 2021. He was an active teacher of Advanced Piloting, and active sailor, and a Power Squadron member 34 years. Education and sailing were keys to Jack’s life.
Share this Story
P/C Robert T. Marshall, 88, of Southport Island, Maine, formerly of Yarmouth, Maine, passed away peacefully on May 8, 2021.
Robert grew up in Portland, the son of John and Evelyne Marshall. He graduated from Deering High School and the University of Maine in Orono. He was a proud member of Sigma Chi. He retired as vice president of J.J. Nissen Baking Company in Portland, Maine.
He was well known in the boating circles, he captained his boat Cygnet from Waterloo, New York to Casco Bay. The coast of Maine continued to be his cruising area. He was a commander of the Casco Bay Power Squadron, a member of Wawenock Power Squadron, and a past commodore of the Down East Yacht Club.
Robert is survived by his wife, Joyce Swan Marshall.
Share this Story
Lt/C Mel Faust, N, was the Executive Officer of the Jones Beach Power Squadron when he passed away suddenly May 27, 2015. As a retired New York City Police Officer, his illness was related and a result from Ground Zero exposure during the September 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center in NYC. Mel’s name is listed under “First Responders” and etched on the granite walls of The 911 Memorial at Eisenhower Park, East Meadow, NY. His funeral was attended by many members of USPS as well as the New York City Police Department. Several NYC Police officers in full dress uniform were pallbearers. He received an honor guard salute.
Mel grew up on Long Island and was a long time resident of Lindenhurst, NY. Mel was an active member of USPS. He was always there to lend a hand. A versatile member, Mel was the JBPS web master, editor of the JBPS “Gudgeon & Pintle,” & a VSC examiner, just to name a few. He won a JBPS cook-off with his famous chicken wings recipe. An avid fisherman, boater, and NASCAR fan, he is survived by his wife Julie, son Michael, and a large extended family. He will be truly missed.
Share this Story