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News Notes – New England

Memorial for Pendleton hero

The Coast Guard recently held a memorial service in honor of Bernard Webber in Wellfleet, Mass.

Miriam Webber, wife of Bernard Webber, accepts a ceremonial flag from Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Thad Allen during a graveside ceremony in Wellfleet, Mass., May 9.

Webber began his 20-year career in the Coast Guard in 1946 and was the coxswain of a 36-foot motorized, wooden lifeboat during the historic rescue of the crew of the Pendleton, a 520-foot tanker, Feb. 18, 1952 off the coast of Chatham, Mass. Webber and his crew saved 32 people in the midst of 60-foot seas and winds exceeding 50 miles per hour.

M52, M29 on display at Morris Yachts show

Morris Yachts will host the fifth annual Morris Boat Show July 17-19 at its service yard in Northeast Harbor, Maine. Open to the public for three days, dozens of Morris Yachts will be on the docks and in the sheds.

Morris Yachts will open their service yard July 17-19 for the company's fifth annual show.

In past years, the fleet has ranged from the Morris 52 Far Out, several M36s and M42s, and the recently launched Morris 48 Cheshire Cat. In the sheds, a range of brokerage boats will be on display.

Morris Yachts produces classically styled cruising yachts and deluxe daysailers using modern construction methods and materials. For information, visit

David ‘Freddie’ Brownell, boat stand designer, dies

Boatbuilder and innovator David “Freddie” Brownell died recently at his home in Mattapoisett, Mass., after a lengthy illness, according to a report on

The head of Brownell Boatworks, Brownell was a builder of custom Eldredge McInnis-designed powerboats that ranged from 24 to 52 feet. The company was founded in 1954 a little more than a mile away from the waterfront in Mattapoisett, where Brownell was raised, according to the site. In addition to Brownell Boat Works, he was the founder of Brownell Boat Trailers, Brownell Boat Stands and what is known today as Brownell Systems.

Brownell was self-taught and, in his early days, built high-quality powerboats that were sought by anglers fishing the waters of Buzzards Bay and Cape Cod, according to news reports. He also was the inventor of the hydraulic boat trailer and the adjustable boat stand, which revolutionized the boating industry throughout the United States and around the world.

The hydraulic boat trailers and adjustable boat stands are still built in his home town.

Brownell travelled to Florida each winter aboard his self-built custom sportfisherman, Maggie B, and enjoyed countless hours aboard his boat in the summer time with family and friends.

Brownell died April 16.

New York show dates moved to January

After seven years, the New York National Boat Show is moving out of its holiday dates and back to its traditional timeframe, the National Marine Manufacturers Association announced.

The 105th annual show, which is changing from nine days to five, will take place Jan. 20-24 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City.

Attendance at the most recent show, held Dec. 13-21, was down 49 percent, the NMMA previously reported.

Grant Westerson, executive director of the Connecticut Marine Trades Association, applauded the news.

“As far as the New York show, it’s probably the best thing they’ve heard in a long time,” he said.

For information, visit

— Beth Rosenberg

Builder receives grant for new runabout

Callinectes Boatworks of Kennebunkport, Maine, received a Maine Technology Institute seed grant of $12,500 to develop production tooling for a new runabout.

Last summer, the company launched a “modern retro-styled” 16-foot runabout that garnered attention at boat shows where it was showcased.

The first hull from the new tooling is scheduled to hit the production floor in June.

Dispute continues over marina expansion

Environmentalists recently filed appeals to block the expansion of Champlin’s Marina in the Great Salt Pond on Block Island, according to reports.

In February, Superior Court Judge Netti Vogel allowed Champlin’s to expand 195 feet into the Great Salt Pond, which some say would damage the area’s environment.

After an evidentiary hearing, she reversed an administrative decision made by a divided Coastal Resources Management Council that denied the marina’s bid to expand.

The most recent appeals were filed by the Conservation Law Foundation and other objectors who say Vogel erred on several points of law.

This article originally appeared in the New England Home Waters Section of the July 2009 issue.