CBMM’s Dan Sutherland Has Passed Away, Memorial Set For March 10 at CBMM

It is with heavy hearts that we report Daniel Sutherland, our dear friend, and much admired boatyard program manager for the past five years, passed away unexpectantly on Saturday, February 18, 2012 of apparent heart failure. He was 47 years old.

Those who had the privilege of knowing Danny–especially those who worked with him or learned small boatbuilding from him, always will remember Danny as an enormously talented craftsman, a patient teacher who generously shared and demonstrated his skills with old and young alike, and, fundamentally, just a great guy who was fun to be around and who never took himself too seriously.

Danny had a national reputation as a boatbuilder and was one of the very best judges of antique and classic boats in the country.

According to CBMM’s Assistant Curator of Watercraft Richard Scofield, Sutherland was the world’s foremost expert on the boats of the famous 19th Century designer and builder, J.H. Rushton, from whose designs Danny built over 50 boats during his lifetime. Danny was recognized by those who know wooden boats well as unsurpassed when it comes to building small, lapstraked boats.

A memorial service and celebration of Dan’s life will be held at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, MD on Saturday, March 10, at 2:00 pm, beginning at the Small Boat Shed and continuing to the Museum’s Boat Shop.

In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that donations in memory of Daniel Sutherland be made to the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, where they will be placed in CBMM’s Boat Building Apprentice Endowment Fund. Donations may be sent to CBMM, PO Box 636, St. Michaels, MD 21663 with a notation that the donation is being made in memory of Dan Sutherland.

Our heartfelt condolences go out to Dan’s family, his two children, Storm and Sky, and his long-time companion, Patti Diamond.

In photo: A photo from 2011 of Dan Sutherland and a few of his co-workers at the transom of the skipjack Rosie Parks. From left: CBMM Assistant Curator of Watercraft Richard Scofield, CBMM Boat Yard Program Manager Dan Sutherland, CBMM Vessel Maintenance Assistant Don MacLeod, and CBMM Project Manager Marc Barto. Photo credit: David Harp, chesapeakephotos.com.