A boat which spent the past several days beached at a Pequot Ave. cove was refloated today.
Michael Bradley, an attorney with offices in Norwich and Westerly, R.I., has owned the 20-ton, 58-foot wooden schooner Sophia Christina since 2006. He said the boat was moored at when it got loose during Hurricane Irene's landfall on Sunday. People at the marina reported the incident, and the schooner caught the eye of Pat Kennedy as he worked to secure items at .
Kennedy, of Kennedy Marine, said he recognized the boat and went into the cove to try to prevent it from being damaged.
"I tried getting on it to drop the anchor, but I just couldn't," he said.
Instead, Kennedy and another man managed to get the boat secured with lines to stop it from rocking back and forth on the beach. Bradley said he was very appreciative of the efforts of Kennedy and Burr's Marina.
"They did everything possible to take care of it once it happened," he said.
Bradley said a number of miraculous factors also resulted in little or no damage to the boat. After drifting up the Thames, it made a 90-degree turn into the cove and avoided numerous hazards, including Junk Island, the rocky areas around , and another sailboat that had come loose. Moreover, the stretch of land it did come ashore on is owned by Kenndy's salvage business, Kennedy Marine.
Kennedy Marine, along with a barge and crane owned by Mohawk of New London, worked to retrieve the vessel this morning. The crane gently lifted the schooner slightly off the ground, backed it into deeper water, and lowered it back onto the surface. Bradley said the boat would either be returned to Burr's or brought to Brewer's Yacht Yard in Mystic, its winter storage location, for repairs if leaks were discovered when the boat was refloated.
Bradley said the Sophia Christina was built in Anacortes, Washington and that he assisted in the construction before going to law school. It was launched in 1983.