Monday, August 4, 2008

Canadian Cutter Joins Search for Missing Trawler

Boston Globe Jan 14, 1947

Heavy weather forced suspension of the air search for the missing Boston trawler Belle tiday, but the Coast Guard cutter Bibb and the Canadian cutter MacBrien continued to scan the seas for the 113-foot fishermen which was four days overdue.

Yesterday's 50,000 square-mile sweep of waters southeast of Boston completed an air search of all areas in which the Belle might be operating or into which she might have drifted.

Despite lowering visibility and increasing winds today, Coast Guardsmen, owners of the trawler and families of the 17 crew members remained optimistic. The Belle is a stout, steel-hulled ship, believed capable of withstanding worse weather than that of the last few days.

The only grim note was injected by a man who formerly captained a craft of the same type. "They're new and they sailed beautifully during the Summer", this man said. "But they look a little top-heavy to me. When winter came I decided to take a vacation. I didn't like the idea of what might happen when ice packed on that superstrucure and threw off the balance."

Plans called for renewal of the air search as soon as the weather improved. The Navy has volunteered "any number" of planes, to assist the five Coast Guard craft which took part in yesterday's sweep.

The cutter Bibb was intercepted and assigned to the search while she was en route to Boston from a northern weather patrol station. Canadian Northwest Mounted Police volunteered the services of the MacBrien, reporting that ship was already patrolling the Brown's Bank area.

The Belle is owned by the Standard Fish Company of Atlantic Ave., Boston, and captained by Pete Linehan of Houghs Neck.

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