She’s All Yours Mr. Pilot: The Marine Pilots of Saint John
by Capt. Donald H. Duffy and E. Neil McKelvey, O.C. Q.C.
In their recently published book, She’s All Yours Mr. Pilot, Captain Donald Duffy and Mr. Neil McKelvey take readers on a fascinating journey through 250 years of piloting the treacherous and ever-changing tides and currents in Saint John harbour. Told with humour and warmth, She’s All Yours Mr. Pilot is the remarkable story of pilotage, from the golden age of sail in the early 18th century, through the era of the great steam ships, the period of global conflict in the first half of the 20th century and to the modern era of supertankers and cruise ships.
If the work of Saint John pilots was routine, this book would probably not be very interesting – in fact, it might not have been worth writing! But that is hardly the case. It turns out, pilots are an intrepid group who have often adventurous and risky lives. Many of these pilots decidedly non-routine experiences are related in this book.
The stories include an aborted expedition to attempt to recover pirates’ gold in the Caribbean, the tragic wrecking of ships and loss of life, and other gripping anecdotes.
Mr. McKelvey was a member of the Royal Commission on Pilotage, appointed by Prime Minister John Diefenbaker in 1962, and brings personal insight into the ten-year process that led, in 1972, to the Pilotage Act, the landmark legislation which continues to form the basis of the country’s pilotage system. Captain Duffy has been a Saint John pilot since 1990 and is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Atlantic Pilotage Authority.
She’s All Yours Mr. Pilot is dedicated to those who lost their lives while on duty in the pilotage service in Saint John. The authors are donating all proceeds from the sale of their book to support the work of the Saint John Seafarers’ Mission.
She’s All Yours Mr. Pilot is available by contacting D.H. Duffy at 8209 Route 102, Public Landing, New Brunswick, E5K 4K9.