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.

April 2 and 3, 2006:
Pio, Jackie, Richie and Michael:
Unbuilding Grace from each end

Over the past two days, Sparky surveyed the Grace work - both on the Mt. Pleasant side: Pio's Legacy, and on the Charleston side: Michael's Pain in the neck.

April 2, 2006 about 4pm

The major unbuilding is over and a number of our Testa friends have migrated to Mississippi. Today, even Brutus seems to be on his way.

as well as a PC 1000 (Leon's ?)

The jackup leg is fully restored and back in position

Mt. Pleasant site

April 3, 2006 about 10am

Here is the Mt. Pleasant worksite - Pio's legacy with a bit of help from Manny, Sonny, Speedy, Chucky, Nugget and Chris

Jackie, tired of the same old stuff with his Harley is developing an alternative to the dune buggy - the CAT marsh buggy. Here is Jackie testing his marsh buggy.

But at the entrance to his buggy trail is Richie's legacy. Remember a few months ago when about 2am, we (actually they: Richie, Roy, Steve, Jackie and me as cheerleader) completed the roadway removal of the Grace on ramp. Here is what remains of our marker - with an added touch by Sparky

But for the real action - here is Jackie and his marsh hammer

In the hammering position

A nice view of the how Jackie orients his marsh buggy for serious hammering

and a close view of the hammer in the attach position

and a close view of the hammer in the action position

Michael and P-3 continue their battle of endurance

Michael and his 1250 - and I can see Joshua studying every move his dad makes

P-3 is composed of a cylinder structure at each extremity and a hollow core

Here Michael displays the orientation of the hammer in the action position

and from afar

working his way down the column

April 4, 2006 P-3 continues to grow down

A day later, Michael is past the half way point

From afar

And what a pleasant end of the day - sunset over Pio's legacy and P-3

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

C. Frank Starmer