Coast Guard searches for body of Massachusetts fisherman

Author:
Updated:
Original:

Even at the age of 69, Capt. Jean Frottier never considered coming permanently ashore. A fisherman retire? Unthinkable.

“The sea is a hard thing — something about the water, it just gets in your blood,” Jack Clark, a fellow fisherman and friend of Frottier’s, told the Boston Globe. “And once it’s in your blood, you can’t get far from it.”

Frottier, a longtime fisherman known across Provincetown, Mass., is presumed dead after his vessel, the Twin Lights, capsized Sunday 2.5 miles off the coast of Race Point. His body has not been recovered.

Frottier’s friends and fellow fishermen, many of whom have spent much of their lives by his side at MacMillan Pier, said they are devastated by the loss of a man who served as an emblem for so much of what is special about their lifestyle.

“If anybody could have gotten out of that boat it would have been Jean Frottier,” Vaughn Cabral, captain of the Cee-Jay fishing boat, told the paper.

Coast Guard officials said they are still investigating the circumstances that led to the capsizing of Frottier’s boat. At the dock where his 42-foot scalloping boat was once moored, friends said they knew the general timeline: On a clear Sunday morning, just off the northwest tip of Provincetown, Frottier’s scallop dredge got caught in a line of lobster traps. The weight of the stuck dredge tugged at the boat, causing it to capsize.

When a nearby fishing vessel raced to the scene, Frottier’s mate, the only other person on the vessel, was clinging to the boat’s hull. As the boat began to submerge, Frottier was nowhere to be seen.

Chief John Harker, the Coast Guard officer in charge of the Provincetown station, said that in the dozen hours after the accident Coast Guard and Massachusetts State Police rescue teams searched for miles around the spot of the capsizing without finding Frottier. Harker said officials are nearly certain that the captain was trapped inside.

The boat lies more than 200 feet below the surface, Harker said. It would be impossible for the state’s dive team to reach that depth. Instead, authorities have used side-scan sonar to identify the vessel’s location on the ocean floor. Next, Harker said, a remotely operated submarine, affixed with mechanical arms and a camera, will probably be used to assess the best way to free the boat from the sea floor.

The family is asking that in lieu of flowers a donation be made to the Frottier Family Fund established at Seaman's Bank to assist Jean's daughter, Annalise, in continuing her college education.

Click here for the Cape Cod Times obit.

Click here for the full report.

Related

Distributor Expands ePropulsion Sales Territory

Mack Boring will now offer ePropulsion’s electric outboards in the entire North American and Central American markets.

Registration Still Open for NMMA Webinar

The March 4 State of the Industry webinar includes the presentation of the Marine Industry Customer Satisfaction Index Awards and the Alan J. Freedman Award.

Rollick Secures $8.5 million in Funding

The market strategists said Web traffic in the third quarter of 2020 was up 245 percent on a year-over-year basis.

Time to Cry Foul Over Erie Canal Changes

An act has been introduced in the waning days of New York’s annual budget process that allows no opportunity for public input.

Service to Send $1 Billion to State Wildlife Agencies

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will distribute funds to states to bolster conservation projects and recreational opportunities.

Quick Hits: March 1, 2021

Safe Harbor Newport Shipyard adds SF Marina floating dock array.

Patrick Supports Care Camps

The outdoors camps for children with cancer receive a first-time gift and marketing support from Patrick Industries.

Brunswick Creates Autonomy Position

The company promoted Jason Arbuckle to marine autonomy technology lead, with a focus on incorporating autonomous and driver-assist features into its product line.