Alaska Marine Lines' Kuskokwim Trader filled in for the USS Turner Joy museum ship this winter serving as a temporary breakwater to protect the Bremerton Marina. The Turner Joy was scheduled for required maintenance in Seattle in January which left the marina without a breakwater to protect the small craft moored there.
Alaska Marine Lines Marine Maintenance Manager David Byrne first got the call from Steven Sparks at the Port of Bremerton. "He saw the Kuskokwim Trader anchored over at Sinclair Inlet near Gorst and came up with the idea to use it as a stand-in for the larger ship," he says. "At 300 feet long, the barge isn't as long as the 418-foot destroyer, so Western Towboat towed it to a spot further away from the bank where it would work just as well."
The barge did its job protecting the northern end of the marina from January through Feb. 28 when the Turner Joy returned to the harbor, towed by Western Towboat.
"When port staff called Alaska Marine Lines for help, David Byrne was very accommodating and acted quickly to help the Port and Historic Ships Association in resolving the issue by providing us with the Kuskokwim Trader.
Mike Clevenger and Rheagan Sparks helped with administrative tasks," says Jim Rothlin, Port of Bremerton CEO. "I very much appreciate Lynden's support."
The Kuskokwim will soon be towed to Western Alaska loaded with cargo for the annual fish season in Bristol Bay. "It was a great fit for the 35-year-old barge," David says, "and we were happy we could help out the Port of Bremerton."