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Sad news from Willy T on Facebook #193328
04/26/2019 02:25 PM
04/26/2019 02:25 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 106
RickBlaine Offline OP
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RickBlaine  Offline OP
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Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 106

The Official William Thornton (Willy T) Fan Club
1 hr ยท
It is with deep sadness that we write this post to let you know we lost our dear Branson Wednesday night in a dinghy accident. He was a very special member of our Willy T family and we will miss him terribly. We ask that you keep Branson and his family in your prayers during this difficult time.

With love, The Willy T family

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Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #193329
04/26/2019 02:28 PM
04/26/2019 02:28 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 106
RickBlaine Offline OP
Traveler
RickBlaine  Offline OP
Traveler
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 106

Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #193336
04/26/2019 04:26 PM
04/26/2019 04:26 PM
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 5,371
An island state of mind
tradewinds Offline
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tradewinds  Offline
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Posts: 5,371
An island state of mind
Branson also worked for Voyage. We've been friends with him for about 12 years.

Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #193350
04/26/2019 07:29 PM
04/26/2019 07:29 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 15,951
Tortola/ Sonoma, California
Manpot Offline
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Manpot  Offline
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Posts: 15,951
Tortola/ Sonoma, California
Terrible news..he was named after Richard Branson and lived in the BVI's his whole life..I believe he was born on Necker.

Last edited by Manpot; 04/26/2019 07:32 PM.
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #193355
04/26/2019 08:29 PM
04/26/2019 08:29 PM
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 186
East Tennessee
Annoddddd Offline
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Annoddddd  Offline
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Posts: 186
East Tennessee
Manpot, that is what we understood too. Branson was born on Necker.

This breaks my heart because he really meant a lot to our family. ๐Ÿ’”๐Ÿ˜ž

Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: Manpot] #193358
04/26/2019 10:50 PM
04/26/2019 10:50 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 744
Manhattan Beach, CA
calsail Offline
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calsail  Offline
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Posts: 744
Manhattan Beach, CA
Sailed with him a number of times with Patouche. Very sad indeed.

Last edited by calsail; 04/26/2019 10:50 PM.
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #193369
04/27/2019 06:34 AM
04/27/2019 06:34 AM
Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 462
ski2play Offline
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ski2play  Offline
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Posts: 462
Rest In Peace. My thoughts of peace go out to his family as they navigate the next few weeks.


[Linked Image]
What a rollercoaster ride rebuilding from Hurricane Irma, some days we won, some days we learned.

Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #193493
04/28/2019 04:18 PM
04/28/2019 04:18 PM
Joined: Oct 2007
Posts: 348
Pittsburgh, PA
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Schwendy Offline
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Schwendy  Offline
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Posts: 348
Pittsburgh, PA
How did it happen? I ask because maybe the details could help prevent an accident for someone else. We had a dingy accident last year rounding the corner from Great Harbor to go over to White Bay on Jost. Water outside the harbor was bigger than we anticipated and swamped us as soon as we all said yeah let's go back. Happened in a flash and one of our crew got banged on the leg by the outboard skeg. VERY lucky the prop wasn't turning as his face was 6 inches from the motor. It doesn't take much and it was a fortunate lesson learned. Extra careful next time. Easy to let your guard down when you're on vacation.



[Linked Image]
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #193686
04/30/2019 12:55 PM
04/30/2019 12:55 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 15,951
Tortola/ Sonoma, California
Manpot Offline
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Manpot  Offline
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Joined: May 2002
Posts: 15,951
Tortola/ Sonoma, California
Any more word on how this happened? Branson spent his whole life in, on and around boats..

Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #193708
04/30/2019 02:42 PM
04/30/2019 02:42 PM
Joined: Dec 2018
Posts: 200
Dana Point
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captdennyj Offline
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captdennyj  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2018
Posts: 200
Dana Point
Schwdny

Good idea on helping to maybe prevent others from having a dink problem, with possible injuries, or worse.

Over 35 years, our two sea stories so others can remain safe.

# 1:.

Ours was in Cane Garden Bay, small dink, Four of us, Very low free board. This was a flotaila, from our sailing club
and our we dink was buzzed close aboard by a large dinghy from one of the other boats.

The wake wave swept into our dink, and filled her with water, we were capsizing, and I shut the outboard down as we were rolling inverted ..
The four of us are in the water,

Erica yells MY CAMERA ! I grab the camera before it sank . Well we righted the dink, and back on board
our bare boat boat, we found her new very expensive electronic super camera was ruined.

No one was injured, since we shut the outboard down as were were capsizing.

The whole event was due to RUM AND DUMB, since we had been tossing down the Pain Killers at Stanleys.

# 2

Dink at night, in Sopers Hole.

Earlier we had been out having dingy races, and hooting it up. It was now well after dinner and just Erica and I
were dinking back to our boat, Fairly strong wind and Current that was heading out to sea,

The out board quits. No fuel to the motor, Add to that, we had not put the oars into the dink
We are drifting at a fairly rapid rate out to sea. Here came the last mooring can, with an un occupied boat secured to the painter.

I reached out and grabbed the mooring line, got the boat stopped. I checked the fuel. Very little left in the tank.
I picked up the tank at an angle so the fuel intake would get some gas to the outboard. Made it back to our boat.

Never again do we get foolish with other dinks, nor do we not have oars on board, and we always check the fuel
before starting the engine. We let party time get in the way of good seamanship and common sense.

Both of those situations could have turned out NOT GOOD.....Especially , with the dink motor shutting down,
late at night, no one else around, and being swept out of Sopers Hole to the dark and empty ocean.

This is just a confession to help others stay safe.

Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #193747
04/30/2019 09:04 PM
04/30/2019 09:04 PM
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 186
East Tennessee
Annoddddd Offline
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Annoddddd  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 186
East Tennessee
Over been trying to find and obituary for Branson with no luck. Does anyone have any info or advice?

Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook [Re: RickBlaine] #194128
05/05/2019 12:05 PM
05/05/2019 12:05 PM
Joined: May 2019
Posts: 2
Colts Neck
V
Vinnie Offline
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Vinnie  Offline
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Joined: May 2019
Posts: 2
Colts Neck
Was at the WIlly T last week. Seem to indicate that he had a large gash in his head when found in the water. Possibly hit by prop after being tossed out of the boat. Speculation at this time.


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