SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Nation/World

August 29, 2012

31/2 years after man swept overboard, boat arrives in Spain

(Continued)

“The ocean moves, and it takes whatever is there with it,” he said.

The 1st District got the call about the boat partially because it said “Nantucket” on the hull, he said. Officers there put together the story after talking with Douglas.

Spain could have claimed the boat but didn’t want it, said Joan Maxwell, co-owner and president of Regulator, which employs 73 people and makes 120 boats a year. So the company eventually reclaimed ownership after Douglas said he didn’t want it back. Regulator plans to take the Queen Bee to shows as evidence of its boat-building expertise. Maxwell hopes it eventually will end up at the shipwreck museum in Nantucket.

Barnacles coated the Queen Bee when it was found, and it appeared to have been hit by a ship because it showed signs of impact on the port side, Maxwell said. The T-top, which provides shade, was damaged, and the deck cap was pulled off, she said.

Otherwise, it was in good condition. Cushions were still on the seats; a nickel remained in the glove box.

Regulator traded in the Queen Bee’s batteries. The twin outboard engines remained. Most of the hatches were gone, but their hinges remained.

“It’s absolutely amazing the things that are still there,” Maxwell said.

Douglas, who bought the Queen Bee in 2003 for just over $100,000, now owns a “much slower, older boat” — a 26-foot bass boat. St. Pierre has moved to Nantucket from New Jersey, where he lived at the time of the accident

“We had an awful lot of good times on the boat,” St. Pierre said. Seeing it again “brought back a lot of fond memories. The last we saw of the boat, it was happily sailing away from us.”

___

Martha Waggoner can be reached at http://twitter.com/mjwaggonernc

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