Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

Hawaii Cruise
March 13, 2001 to June 2, 2001
Monterey to Hawaii and back
Western Flyer Crew and Tiburon Pilots

Click on any name below to read an interview:
Leg 1 Crew; Leg 2 Crew; Leg 3 Crew; Leg 4 Crew; Leg 5 Crew; Western Flyer Crew

Brian Ackerman, Douglas Alexander, Dan Chamberlain, David Chase, David French, Dale Graves
Tim McLaughlin, Shawn Osborn, Darrell Palmer, Steve Phillips, Robert "Buck" Reynolds
Campbell "Buzz" Scott, Andy Stuhan, Paul Tucker, Lance Wardle, Ian Young, Peter Zerr

Brian Ackerman
Second Mate

What is your role on this cruise?
Doug's cinnamon buns.

What is your favorite/least favorite part of a research cruise?
The adventure of crossing an ocean. Learning the elements of a particular vessel's operation.
Being away from my sweetheart.

Why did you decide to become a Second Mate? And how did you become one?
When I was ten, my goal was to become Cousteau's captain. I always thought that oceanography was the coolest occupation on the planet and I've been a boat nut since the beginning of time.
Ten years ago I came across a classified in the Monterey Herald advertising for a relief deckhand position on the Point Lobos. Having no experience, I promptly hand delivered a resume' outlining my vast expertise in the hospitality industry and then stood on the dock every morning at 06:30 with my sea boots on and a knife in my belt until they tired of looking at me.
Suggestions to those who follow:

The easy way: 
1) Join the coast guard...get a job. 
2) Go to a maritime academy...get a job 

The Ackerman way: 
1) Work for eighteen years in a totally unrelated career path. 
2) Remain flexible, up beat, opportunistic and tenacious. 
3) Prepare yourself for inevitable humiliation. (If you don't fail from time to time, you're not trying hard enough.) 
4) Never stop learning.

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Douglas Alexander
Steward/Deckhand

What is your role on this cruise?
Steward/ AB ( Coast Guard endorsed Able Seaman)

What is your favorite/least favorite part of a research cruise?
Arriving at a different port / People who lose their sense of humor

Why did you decide to become a Steward/Deckhand? And how did you become one?
I was terminated from the Prison after the Board of Inquiry after they found that it was my food that caused that awful riot. Just kidding, I applied for this position as an internal MBARI transfer as it seemed like an interesting position and a chance to try something different.
Apply to the Witness Protection Program. But really, after applying for the position, I attended classes on cooking and learned on the job.

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Dan Chamberlain
Pilot II/Technician
http://www.mbari.org/staff/chda/

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David Chase
Second Assistant Engineer/Deckhand

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David French
Pilot II/Technician
http://www.mbari.org/staff/dfrench/

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Dale Graves
Chief Pilot
http://www.mbari.org/staff/derek/

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Tim McLaughlin
First Assistant Engineer

What is your role on this cruise?
My role to avoid perdition to the Western Flyer by keeping everything on the boat running in a safe and efficient manner. I also foment improvements to the already nearly perfect Western Flyer. With the exception of Tiburon if it has electricity running through it, has any moving parts, requires modification, or troubleshooting, it is my responsibility to see that it taken care of. I do not do this alone. My junto includes Pete Zerr, Dave Chase and Andy Stuhan.

What is your favorite part of a research cruise?
I have at least two favorites: 
1. I enjoy being a part of the research that the Western Flyer supports. I never imagined that I would be part of something so amazing. 
2. Diversity. I rarely work on the same thing from one day to the next.

What is your least favorite part of a research cruise?
Being away from my two absolutely wonderful darn near perfect children Shannen and Cassady.

Why did you decide to become a First Assistant Engineer? And how did you become one?
I didn't, I decided to become a Chief Engineer but that job was taken.

How did you become one? I graduated with two BS's, one in Mechanical Engineering and the other in Systems Engineering, then decided that I wanted to get a job that would pay well and take me around the world as well, so I: "hopped on a freighter, skidded the ocean and left England without a sound" I stole that from Jimmy Buffet by the way but that is basically how it happened.

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Shawn Osborn
EMT/Deckhand

What is your role on this cruise?
Operational support, launch and recovery of ROV and scientific equipment, Ship's Medical Technician

What is your favorite/least favorite part of a research cruise?
I like the adventure, being part of a top notch team and enjoy the satisfaction of using key technologies for experimenting and discovery. However, I don't enjoy being away from my wife and son for long periods of time.

What is your job title? Why did you decide to become one? And how did you become one?
I truly love the Ocean, I thrive on it's peace and energy. I also personally feel a strong pull toward emergency medicine and the respective responsibilities.

I grew up sailing and boating. I eventually attended and graduated from a Maritime Trade College in Seward Alaska, AVTEC. I've been an active EMT since I was 18. I would suggest for most people to pursue a different career path. If your determined to work on boats or in the shipping industry, attend and graduate from a Maritime Academy. Be prepared for a hard family life.

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Darrell Palmer
Chief Mate

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Steve Phillips
Second Mate

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Robert "Buck" Reynolds
Senior Pilot

What is your role on this cruise?
My primary role is to provide ROV services for the midwater scientists during the actual crossing. This includes launching, piloting, recovery, maintenance, and repair Tiburon ROV.
The crew provides all of the deck support for CTD casts, Net casts, and water sampling for crossing. We pilots fill in for the crew when they are tired or just need some more help with the deck operations. We provide at least one pilot a day for this operation.

What is your favorite/least favorite part of a research cruise?
My favorite part is always being a member of a team that can provide information, data, and possibly something new and exciting to the world. Along with that comes the long, and sometimes boring times of NOT finding anything of importance to pass along. The travel times between sites can seem to be longer than they really are.

Why did you decide to become a Senior Pilot? And how did you become one?
During my Navy career as a Diver, I was involved with the introduction of ROVs in the Navy. I started piloting them until I retired in 1988. I then started work for an offshore company and continued with ROVs along side Dale Graves (Chief Pilot). We have worked together for the last 10 years.
As far as the Senior part, I would hope to think that it was because of my experience instead of my age. haha ALOHA!!!

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Campbell "Buzz" Scott
Technician

What is your role on this cruise?
My role on the cruise will be to fly and help maintain the ROV with the other Tiburon pilots and to support the science party to ensure they have a successful cruise.

What is your favorite/least favorite part of a research cruise?
Finding new things with the scientists and hearing they have had a successful cruise. My least favorite part of a cruise is when rough weather keeps us from putting the ROV in the water.

Why did you decide to become a Technician? And how did you become one?
I love going to sea and I am very interested in what's under the sea and how it works. I worked several different mechanical and marine related jobs and was lucky enough to be available when the Tiburon crew was looking for a mechanical technician.

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Andy Stuhan
Deckhand/Oiler

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Paul Tucker
Pilot II/Technician

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Lance Wardle
Deckhand/Oiler

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Ian Young
Master

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Peter Zerr
Chief Engineer

What is your role on this cruise?
My job is to ensure that all of the mechanical equipment onboard is maintained and to repair anything when it breaks down. I have a great crew of guys working for me and we keep busy working on different pieces of machinery everyday. That is the greatest part of this job, the variety of tasks we have to perform.

What is your favorite/least favorite part of a research cruise?
I enjoy everything about the cruise, as long as we don't get into too rough of weather. The least favorite part about it is being away from my family for so long.

What is your job title? Why did you decide to become one? And how did you become one?
I graduated from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and came out of there with a third assistant engineer's license and have been working my way up the ladder since then.

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