World War II patrol boat restoration under way

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A small team, mostly made up of volunteers, is restoring a rare World War II patrol boat in an annex of the National World War II Museum in New Orleans.

The PT 305 was built at the Higgins Industries plant near City Park in 1943. It looks just like an old-fashioned wooden speedboat, except its 78 feet in length.

The museum acquired the boat in 2005 before Hurricane Katrina from restorers in Texas that had underestimated the scope of the project. Work began on PT 305 four years ago, he said, and there’s still a year or two to go. The restoration relies on highly skilled unpaid labor.

“To keep all these volunteers dedicated to one project for this length of time, speaks very highly of their devotion,” Bruce Harris, a World War II museum employee and director of the restoration, told The Times-Picayne. “The camaraderie and joking that goes on here is just phenomenal. It keeps us all together as a very tight-knit group.”

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