Human Interest


— by Capt. Bill Pike, Photography by Jim Raycroft,
Power & Motoryacht Magazine

By hard-travelin' a variety of rivers in Vietnam, in search of an old American patrol boat left over from the war, two Vietnam vets encounter a totally unexpected truth.

PBR (Patrol Boat, River, in military parlance) of the type featured in Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now.

"See, what we do, Jim," I explained, as we ambled the docks during the 2013 Ft. Lauderdale International Boat Show, "is we track down one of these babies-I mean it may be a ferry boat now, or a fishing boat, or shoot, even the roof of somebody's house. But anyway, we find the darn thing and then we interview the folks who own it, and the folks who owned it before them, and use the whole process to find out what's happened to Vietnam and the Vietnamese people during the years since the war."

“Hmmm,” replied Raycroft, obviously curious.  “But why the PBR thing?  I mean, why are you so interested in some old patrol boat, if in fact there is one hiding over there?”

Read Bill Pike's full story here: Going Back to Vietnam

While in Vietnam Bill wrote a series of blog posts. They are posted here:

Boatbuilding in Vietnam
By Capt. Bill Pike
Photography by Jim Raycroft

Long Ranger - Executive Editor Capt. Bill Pike travels to Vietnam to check in with prolific boatbuilder Dan Fritz and get the first look at his series of new Globetrotting trawlers.

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