Sunday, September 13, 2015


Woodshole Oceanographic Institute's Alvin DSV
Well it's been 5 years since we headed down to the Gulf to work on a multi-episodic documentary centered around the Deepwater Horizon disaster. The negative impact it had on the economy, the environment and most importantly to its people is still in play today.

The team of scientists assembled onboard the R/V Atlantis were world re-known.  We even had a visit and some one on one time with Dr. Sylvia Earle during ALVIN DSV's last dive.

At present we are still trying to raise funds to return and complete the story but in the meantime I took my family on a related journey, a personal one for me...

Our next generation will be inheriting much of the mess my generation has subjected the planet to over the past 40 years. So along with my wife and my 15 year old son we packed our bags and headed to the East coast to pay a visit to Dr. Tim Shanks and some other members of the scientific team that I was onboard with on the R/V Atlantis back in 2010.

I believe our trip to Falmouth , MA. was an eye opening trip for my son and I also believe his appreciation of our oceans and our environment is growing with each passing year. For me it was not only uplifting to meet with some of these people again but it was also a reminder of spending time with Mike deGruy in the Alvin sub and working feverishly to fix it's many problems related to imaging back in 2010. Without good video and images we would not have been able to make a case that the oil and dispersants were indeed killing the deep sea corals and marine life. We purveiled and on the last dive with Dr. Chuck Fisher and Mike shooting away, the images were brought back for the world to see the real damage these deadly ingredients wreaked upon our precious environment, a fragile ecosystem 5000 ft below the oceans surface.

My son has been on this journey with me all the way. We even flew him out to the Gulf for our wrap party and the two of us, along with my nephew driving a Uhaul truck,  drove all the way back from Pensacola Florida, all the way back to Santa Barbara and stopping everywhere along the way.

We talked about a lot of things and for a 10 year old he had a lot to say and a lot of opinions over what happened as well as what we saw each day during our travels in the Gulf and across this great country. My son was named after Sir Francis Drake the great explorer and I'm hopeful that Drake will be active about our planet no matter what career may be his calling. If we continue to educate our youth and show them the good as well as some of the bad things going on in our environment then hopefully they will be better caretakers of our fragile eco-system here on planet Earth.
Looking at the old 6 foot diameter titanium ball, the heart and soul and our safety net that once was inside the Alvin DSV's frame work I thought about Mike deGruy, his infectious laugh, his big smile and his incredible life devotion to making things better for all of us that dwell upon the Earth. We along with Dr. Chuck Fisher, Dr. Tim Shanks and Pilot Dave were the last ones inside that sphere and I shed a tear and wished he could be here walking among us! And then I looked back at my son and could comfortably relay to Mike...Hey Mike the world will be in good hands, in good hands!