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replacement several years ago), but wasn’t experiencing any
recent troubles. In fact, the two of us went to Florida to celebrate
the end of a good season just a week before he passed away.
health became a topic of conversation, and I asked him about
his heart; he said that everything appeared to be fine at his last
check-up.
how difficult was it to pick yourself up and carry on with
business?
that’s a good question. how hard was it to pick myself up and
carry on? In a nutshell … very hard. Death is a natural process
that we all have to deal with from time to time; however, the
death of Dave took me completely off guard. We had a “plan” in
my own brokerage came easily. It hasn’t been six
months since we opened our doors, and despite the
economic challenges we may be facing, boat sales
are happening (albeit slowly). I can honestly say that
life is good once again. We have a good crew, many
of which have known Dave for many years. We all
have our memories of Dave and the past, but we’re
now at the point where the laughs have replaced the
tears. Be it on the water, the golf course, or the local
watering hole, we find ourselves on many occasions
sharing good stories and enjoying each other’s
company.
When did you launch North South?
From left to right: greg
I parted ways with Angus Yachts at the end of october
Stratychuk, grant Bodnar, Mike
2008, and immediately got the ball rolling to start
Burns, Don Allin, Rocco Barca. up north south. Ironically, I received a call from the
landlord on the morning of november 20, telling
me that my new office lease (in the same marina
place for me to eventually take over the business, and after Dave
complex as Angus and Clift’s) was ready to be picked up. then,
died, of course, grieving the loss of him came first and foremost
as I was heading to the marina, I received a call from one of the
for myself and many others. I found, however, that the intensity
brokers saying that Angus had gone bankrupt and everyone was
of the grieving process was compounded by the fact that we still
told to clear out. I officially opened on December 1.
had the business to contend with, which affected Dave’s family,
me, and the others at the company. In hindsight, a lot of things When you started, which brokers previously with Clift’s
seemed to happen in a relatively short period of time. When joined you?
the company was eventually sold, it felt like another loss. things rocco Barca immediately joined me. Greg startychuk came
were not the same, and it was almost painful to see what we on board as well, and I took over the lease for the office at st
had worked so hard to build up, be picked apart piece by piece. Catharine’s Marina, which Greg had been working out of. Long-
the working environment after the acquisition was not a time brokers with Clift’s, Don Allin and Grant Bodnar, came on
positive one, but as the adage goes, “If it doesn’t kill you, it board shortly after. they each brought a variety of knowledge
will only make you stronger.” Well, this definitely seemed to and experience to the table. At the end of the day, however, it
be the case for me. Almost a year after the passing of Dave, is a strong work ethic, professionalism, and friendly customer
I gained a newfound confidence, and the decision to start service that make all of them, and the company, successful.
38 YACHTWORLD.COM MAY 2009
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