I was pleased to read a recent article in The Post and Courier concerning a second life for the Spirit of South Carolina. A number of dedicated volunteers were mentioned, all richly deserving recognition.
A special thanks to Mike Bennett and Tommy Baker for their efforts to save the Spirit for our state and community.
What was absent in the article was any mention of key people who devoted much in the way of financial resources and years of work to transform the Spirit from a vision to a beautiful, sailing reality.
Ted Turner, Hank Hofford and Pierre Manigault, among others, deserve recognition. Without those gentlemen and their families, the ship would never have made it from a pile of wood on the Green to a sleek sailing classroom and ambassador for the state of South Carolina that all citizens can be proud of.
Many public and private school children all over South Carolina either sailed onboard the Spirit or used classroom-taught math and science skills to follow their schoolmates as the Spirit made its way along the coast.
As a board member of the South Carolina Maritime Heritage Foundation, I witnessed the extraordinary commitment to the project of those gentlemen named above and others who “chipped in” in a significant way.
It is my wish that the Spirit of South Carolina ultimately fulfill its mission to bring to all South Carolinians a tangible, living link to South Carolina’s rich maritime heritage.
Johnnie Dodds Boulevard