Melancholy News: R.I.P. Tom Harrer

Ann Lynaugh, spouse of Tom Harrer, the master of White Wings III, contacted me by e-mail on 28 October with very sad news.

Tom passed away 11 October of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

I first met Tom in the Sam L Morse Co. yard, when White Wings III and Zygote were under construction. Tom meticulously cared for White Wings III, sailing her with Ann and family on the Great Lakes. Tom was no lazy sailor - he delighted in the performance that Lyle C. Hess incorporated in the hull and rig. Tom’s dream, unrealised, was to cross oceans with White Wings III. He now is on the big crossing, closing the circle of life.

Fellow BCC owners likely saw recent forum traffic when Tom was preparing White Wings III for sale. That sale fell through. White Wings III is listed with Rogue Wave of Annapolis. Anyone desiring a Dick McComb-Tommie Whisler era BCC that has been maintained to better than showroom conditions and sailed exclusively in Great Lakes waters should act fast.

May you be well and happy


Ann shared news that Shane Connelly, of Canberra in Australia, has bought White Wings III.

Canberra is one of a tiny number of inland cities in Australia (most all urban settlements are on the sea coast. Canberra was created as the national capital as a compromise between the claims of the two big cities, Sydney and Melbourne, so it’s in between those two cities in what was then described as ‘clapped-out sheep country’).

Canberra city was designed by US architect Walter Burley Griffin. It has a large artificial lake, but my guess is that Shane will keep WW3 at one of the nearby sea ports, such as Jervis Bay, Bateman’s Bay, or Eden.

We’ll keep an eye out for Shane and WW3. Neat to have another Sam L Morse Co boat on the Australian Shipping Register - where Zygote is the last on the register (in alphabetical order)!



It is fitting to use this post to introduce myself to the forum and to let you know the legacy Tom has left in Whitewings 3 lives on. I never had the pleasure meeting Tom but it was this forum and his post offering Whitewings 3 for sale that led me to her eventual purchase and adventure which has taken her from the cold winter of Sister Bay to the balmy waters of South East Australia. Tom’s reputation for fastidiously maintaining Whitewings 3 was well earned. She was packed and trucked to Florida, re-rigged and loaded onto a float on/off ship, crossed the Pacific and launched in Brisbane Australia on 1.2.14. This I understand was her first baptism in salt water. After changing the compass from Northern to Southern Hemisphere, converting her from 110v to 240v shore power, a few tweaks of the rig and a well earned scrub we set sail from Brisbane and headed 600 nm south for Batemans Bay which is on the far south coast of NSW. She lived up to her reputation as a fine sea boat and is in absolutely wonderful condition. Bill from Zygote has already proved to be a wealth of information and I look forward to keeping in touch with you all through the forum. In the meantime in particular I would like to thank Tom’s wife Anne and her son Max for making sure this incredible boat has gone to a good home. She is enjoying her new life in the salt water and we are both looking forward to the adventures that lay ahead.

Shane, Whitewings3

Dear Shane,
Welcome to the elite and proud group of BCC owners !
It’s great to see these wonderful vessels appearing in all corners of the globe !

May she bring you years of happiness and fulfilment, as Adventure continues to bring me.

Thanks Mike, she is already delivering in spades!