Out of Gloucester


 

February 21, 1940

Fisherman Swept From Deck of Pollyanna

After weathering the strongest northeast blizzard, the local 98 foot auxiliary sch. Pollyanna, Capt. Robert O'Brien, lost a man overboard, 70 miles east of Thacher's Island, Rockport, about 5 o'clock yesterday afternoon, on her way into Boston Fish pier, after a seven day dory haddocking trip to Brown's bank.

The unfortunate man was Lawrence Doucette, 44 years, single, and a native of Nova Scotia, who roomed near Boston Fish pier.  It was his third trip aboard the Pollyanna which is owned by the Gorton Pew Vessel Company of Gloucester.  The trawler arrived at Boston Fish pier early this morning with her American flag at half-mast, telling of the tragedy at sea.

Capt. O'Brien told reporters that Doucette had been at the wheel and surrendered it to Able Meuse, 10 minutes before he disappeared over the rail.  The weather was clear, and only an average sea was running, though it was blowing considerably, the skipper said.

The last that Muese and his dory mate Scotty D'Arcy, both of whom were in the pilot house, saw of Doucette, he was standing o deck between the house and the main rigging.  When they looked in that direction again, Doucette was gone.  Realizing he could not have gone below, they summoned the skipper and started searching the waters for a trace of the man.  Capt. O'Brien and his crew cruised around the vicinity for a couple hours before they gave up.  The skipper believes that Doucette slipped on the deck in trying to buck the stiff breeze and losing his balance was thrown overboard.  Weighted down by oilskins and heavy boots, he had no chance and his cries were not heard above the wind.

Doucette signed up with the Pollyanna a month ago.  He was an able fisherman and a likable dory mate according to the skipper and crew.  He had been fishing all his life.  His father, a member of the crew of a the Gloucester sch. J. M. Marshall, a dory trawler, who was at the Boston pier when the Pollyanna arrived today, was informed of this son's death.

 

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