Ralph Meloon of Correct Craft will be inducted into the National Marine Manufacturers Association Hall of Fame.
Meloon’s career achievements and contributions to the recreational boating industry will be recognized during the 23rd annual International BoatBuilders’ Exhibition & Conference at the show’s annual Industry Breakfast on Sept. 17 at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville.
The NMMA Hall of Fame was established in 1988 and recognizes people who have, or continue to generate, substantial and lasting contributions to the advancement of the marine industry.
Meloon held numerous executive positions at Correct Craft, including president, executive vice president, treasurer and secretary. He was named board chairman in 1975, a position he held until retiring in 2002, and he currently serves as chairman emeritus.
“Ralph has spent the past 80 years supporting the boating industry through his time at Correct Craft,” Mercury Marine Group president and NMMA chairman Mark Schwabero said in a statement. “His work will leave an undeniable legacy, and I’m honored to be announcing his induction into the NMMA Hall of Fame.”
Ralph C. Meloon Sr. was 7 years old when his father, W.C. Meloon, founded Correct Craft in 1925, and he has spent his life operating, building and selling boats. Today, at age 95, Meloon continues to be instrumental to Correct Craft’s success, promoting boating around the world and helping to build Correct Craft and Nautique as premier brands for water-ski and wakeboard enthusiasts worldwide.
Meloon has seen Correct Craft through many challenges and helped it capitalize on numerous opportunities. He helped the company survive the Great Depression by traveling through the eastern United States with his father and brothers, thrilling customers with water toboggans, water skis, aquaplanes and gliders while offering 10- and 25-cent boat rides to pay expenses.
During World War II, Correct Craft worked to build 400 storm boats in less than three weeks for the military, earning the company the Army and Navy “E” Award, an honor presented to a company for excellence in the production of war equipment.