Saturday, October 10, 2015

Met one of my heroes today - Matt Rutherford

Not too many people have made my hero list, my Dad, Einstein, Richard Feynman, David Gilmore and a few others, but the latest to the list is Matt Rutherford. Here is a guy that was, in his own words a bit of a troublemaker as a kid yet he found a purpose, taught himself to sail and made several transatlantic trips solo. But, that was the primer.

Matt and I at US Sailboat Show Oct 2015 

In 2011 Matt, who says he isn't an adventurer, set out on a record-breaking journey. In fact, a journey never completed before as he sailed through the Northwest Passage circumnavigating both the North and South American continents. Starting in the Chesapeake bay and heading north through the treacherous Northwest Passage across the top of Canada, around Alaska through the Bering straight, down the west coast of Americas to the southern tip of South America and around Cape Horn then all the way back to Annapolis Harbor. Sounds like a challenge? He did it Single-Handed in a 27-foot sailboat, 27,000 miles in 309 days. Mind blowing! and he says he isn't an adventurer. Humility seems to be a trait. 

So to take this back a little, when I started getting into the whole idea of sailing, I started watching sailing movies. All is lost, Wind, and yes Captain Ron. But I heard about a movie/documentary called Red Dot on the Ocean, the story of Matt Rutherford and started researching him and watching youtube and Vimeo clips about his adventure. it was exciting to hear about his journey, but I never saw the movie. I soon learned that he did his sail to rais money for Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating (CRAB), CRAB is dedicated to making the thrill of sailing a reality for physically and developmentally disabled individuals. So just a few weeks back I decided it was time to buy the movie and I searched for it. I found it for sale on Amazon and at The Sailing Channel but procrastination set in and I waited.  I knew that I needed to refrain from frivolous spending because the purchase of a boat was imminent so I waited. 

Karla and I were planning to attend the US Sailboat Show in Annapolis and as we were looking for a head, I walked past a booth selling books and movies and there was "Red Dot on the Ocean". I asked the person How much and said I'd been really wanting to buy the movie and that Matt was one of my Sailing heroes, he looked at me and said, "well here he is, say hi" and there in front of me stood Matt. Well, when you meet a hero, it isn't always as expected and I wasn't sure what to expect but he was warm, friendly and just wanted to talk about Sailing and CRAB. A really pleasant guy.

On April 21st, 2012, Mat returned to Annapolis Maryland a local hero.

Matt then embarked on another journey, one that is near and dear to my heart and that is plastics in the ocean, but not just plastics alone, that was his first mission. Now Matt has launched a non-profit company, Ocean Research Project, which aims to identify new, lower-cost methods of conducting ocean research.  The typical ocean research project has run rated of $6000 to $10000 per day, depending on the organization. With Ocean Research Project, his first expedition will have a daily run rate of $73 per day. Since the ocean is my true love and I Dive, I sail and I dream of the sea, reducing research costs in areas of fish sustainability, plastics and the effects of climate are something that just make me look up to this guy even more. 

Read more on the Ocean research Project website and follow Matt on his future journies. Thanks Matt for taking the lead to being an outstanding guy and standing for our oceans. 

Signing out for now and :

May the winds always fill your sails and the sun and moon light your passage.

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