Unbuilding the Grace and Pearman Bridges

For Sparky and myself, curiosity drives passion which in turn fuels our life's engine. Our passion was capturing the story of both unbuilding the Grace (1929 - 2007) and Pearman (1966 - 2007) Bridges and discovering the unbuilders. It takes a lot of passion to track a project from July 2005 until April 2007 - rain, shine, hurricanes or moving to Singapore. We discovered the joy of discovery learning. Ken Canty opened the front door for us - then Steve Testa, Ponch Billingsley and Mickey Rogers opened many side doors. Below are the highlights of what we discovered, who we met and what we learned.

And a reminder from T.S. Eliot (East Coker from the Four Quartets)

Home is where one starts from. As we grow older
The world becomes stranger, the pattern more complicated
Of dead and living. Not the intense moment
Isolated, with no before and after,
But a lifetime burning in every moment
And not the lifetime of one man only
But of old stones that cannot be deciphered.

July 25, 2006: Fishing with the 995 and unfishing at the Navy Yard

Cousin Arthur - rather lonely

The worksite

Timmy in the final stages of unbuilding P-9

a closer look

Mickey's new Copco drilling C-2 (who is drilling?)

From above. The small red cups in the tops of the holes prevent the frequent rains from filling up the holes with water. You'll remember the "old faithful" fountain effect when the water has to be blown out

The 995 and fishing for debris with Joe Rye

And Mickey's taxi with Mickey working on tanning his head - even from Singapore, I can tell he is making progress

Meet the 995

and the back of Joe Rye's head.

The screen on the left gives him a sonar view of the underwater surface while the screen on the right provides a profile of the boom and shovel location

The bucket - and note that the physical configuration is paralleled by the video presentation above

On the way back to the port, are the Grace and Pearman skeletons

and another look at Cousin Arthur

Meanwhile at the Navy Yard

Michael and Robbie in deep discussion

Moving and chewing pieces

Michael's 1250

and a photo of Joshua's dad - inside

and outside

Robbie, Michael and Richard (right to left)

and a bit of US pride!

A mouth full of rebar

Clash of the Titans

Unloading a barge of Pearman debris - and to the left, doing a little neck reduction on Michael's 1250.

Lift from the barge


open wide

and drop - just like Billy does it at eh Coleman recycle center

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

C. Frank Starmer