Industry mourns Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating founder

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Don Backe, who founded Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating to bring boating access to people with disabilities, died Friday at Gilchrest Hospice Care in Columbia, Md., after a prolonged illness. He was 77.

Backe was a teacher — not just on a sailboat, where the Annapolis man made a name for himself in recent years, and not just in the classroom, where he spent decades educating young students.

Backe, who used a wheelchair since 1987, when a car crash robbed him of his ability to walk, taught lessons in perseverance, friends and family said Saturday.

“He was an inspirational figure because he never stopped,” said Angus Phillips, who knew Backe for more than a decade. “He got in that terrible accident and a lot of people would have curled up and gave up, but a lot of his achievements came after that. He was indefatigable.”

Click here for the full report by The Capital Gazette.

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Comments

One comment on “Industry mourns Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating founder

  1. Zack Smith

    Don is much more than I can describe. Highly intelligent, very warm, and extremely supportive in whatever endeavor one might be working toward. I will completely miss seeing him at the docks in Annapolis, right next to the Crab foundation boat display.

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