Posted By: RickBlaine
Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 04/26/2019 07:25 PM
The Official William Thornton (Willy T) Fan Club
1 hr ·
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
Posted By: tradewinds
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 04/26/2019 09:26 PM
Branson also worked for Voyage. We've been friends with him for about 12 years.
Posted By: Manpot
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 04/27/2019 12:29 AM
Terrible news..he was named after Richard Branson and lived in the BVI's his whole life..I believe he was born on Necker.
Posted By: Annoddddd
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 04/27/2019 01:29 AM
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. 💔😞
Posted By: calsail
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 04/27/2019 03:50 AM
Sailed with him a number of times with Patouche. Very sad indeed.
Posted By: ski2play
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 04/27/2019 11:34 AM
Rest In Peace. My thoughts of peace go out to his family as they navigate the next few weeks.
Posted By: Schwendy
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 04/28/2019 09:18 PM
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.
Posted By: Manpot
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 04/30/2019 05:55 PM
Any more word on how this happened? Branson spent his whole life in, on and around boats..
Posted By: captdennyj
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 04/30/2019 07:42 PM
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.
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.
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.
Posted By: Annoddddd
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 05/01/2019 02:04 AM
Over been trying to find and obituary for Branson with no luck. Does anyone have any info or advice?
Posted By: Vinnie
Re: Sad news from Willy T on Facebook - 05/05/2019 05:05 PM
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.