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.

January 23, 2006: Richie Bagan

I first met Richie on September 20, 2005. So why so long to make a story? The problem is me - all the unbuilders have showered me with ideas, insights, challenges etc - and it takes time for me to sort things out. Richie is on of those guys that does it all - another continuous smile (sometimes disguised). Here is Richie

Richie suiting up for some serious buring while Jim (banned to Drum Island) simply grins

Richie cutting a crossbeam

Richie solving a problem - no surprise here!

Richie can burn anywhere

Richie can also sweep with his I-beam broom

Here with Pio (left) and Roy (middle)

One night, I caught Richie driving a highly mobile Cat - here a blur - so Bob McCabe is not the only blurred guy in an orange tee-shirt

and another view of all purpose Richie - burner, fetch and tote man, cleaner-upper and simply a great guy

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C. Frank Starmer