Skip to main content

Wayward abandoned sailboat scrapped for $1

A 1976 Pearson 365 sailboat was abandoned 550 miles off South Carolina, the ketch wound up on a beach on Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., was sold for $1 to the tow firm that salvaged the boat.

A 36.5-foot sailboat that washed ashore on Norton Point July 5 is finally off the beach after a week of removal efforts, and Edgartown police reported that several people who stripped the boat of its contents have returned the items.

Edgartown police Det. Sgt. Christopher Dolby told the Vineyard Gazette this week that Running Free, the sailboat belonging to Bill Heldenbrand, 67, of St. Joseph, Mo., was pulled off the beach last Friday.

During an attempted trans-Atlantic voyage, Mr. Heldenbrand encountered a severe storm and was forced to abandon his boat between Florida and Bermuda.

Click here for the full report and look for an in-depth report on the abandoned boat in the September issue of Soundings.