Since that time, I can say we had an excellent crab seasons on the FV Brenna A and on the FV Jennifer A.
And, since that time, I can say I was the world's worst blogger! I had high high hopes of blogging more often about Sean's first year on the Deadliest Catch, but I was just insanely busy.
We were not planning on having the Brenna A begin crabbing when it did. We had an amazing opportunity present itself when one of the producers for Deadliest Catch called my home phone and said they would like to talk to us about Sean and the FV Brenna A being on the show. We met with them, did a bit of negotiating and then started filming in Sept of 2015, as we got ready for the 2016 crab season.
Sean, the crew, and the FV Brenna A left to go fish Bairdi crab. During that time, they faced three different hurricanes, and a few other interesting things. But, Sean's first season fishing on the Brenna A was a success. He caught over 500,000 lbs of Bairdi crab, the boat and crew tied up in Dutch at season's end and everyone returned home. 2016 Bairdi season was a wrap!
That season came and went, and I didn't blog. I was swamped with the business end of having two boats fishing crab for the first time in our business history!
Suddenly, it was crab season 2017.
Suddenly I was swamped again and writing to a back burner to everything else. While the boat is out fishing and Sean manages that end of it...fishing crab, managing crew, dealing with weather, his mother calling him all the time, and filming for Deadliest Catch. I am at home, in our home office trying to keep up on the paperwork end of everything, while Brenna, manages the social media part of the equation.
I can not even put into words the amazing reception we received as our ALS story was told on Season 12 of the Deadliest Catch.
We have been overwhelmed, and overjoyed. We received so many emails and FB messages from other families living with ALS. It was heartwarming and heartbreaking at the same time. When you are living with ALS in your life, days are just hard. It can also be very isolating at times. Anytime you hear the letters ALS uttered outside of the ALS community, it brings such hope. You feel like, "ohmigosh, someone knows about ALS, I'm not alone."
I remember receiving an email from a family where the husband had to recently quit his job due to his ALS. His wife reached out to me, asking how did I handle it when Pat had to stop working, physically stop working on the boats, because of his ALS. We corresponded and I think I was able to help. It's connections like that, made because ALS was part of a story line on Deadliest Catch that offered hope to many families that they aren't alone, and someone really gets what it's like to live with ALS in your life...and then, when it's gone from your life.
For those of you who don't know our story it is one about ALS (the disease ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease), resilience, and hard work.
The very short version of the story is as follows below. For a the more complete story please read the blog from last year.
My husband Pat was diagnosed with ALS in June of 2005. Sean was 13 and Brenna was 15. In June of 2013, Pat decided he was done living with ALS and passed away on June 4th, 2013. Six months after he was diagnosed with ALS, he bought our company's second boat, and re-named it the Brenna A, after our daughter. Pat always wanted the boat to go crabbing, and we had our own plan for making that happen. But then, Deadliest Catch offered us an opportunity and with the generosity of Sig Hansen and Keith Coburn, we were able to make Pat's dream of the Brenna A going crabbing happen earlier than we anticipated. However, it was a ton of work, as is anything good, and it was pretty insane getting everything ready!
Because of our participation with Deadliest Catch and Discovery Channel, we have had some really amazing experiences and some great great people step up and help us raise funds and awareness for ALS research at ALS TDI.
In future blog posts I'll keep you updated on those unique and creative ways we are able to support ALS research. It really is overwhelming. For as hideous as the disease ALS is, the kindness we have been shown because of it, really truly is incredible.
We can't thanks everyone at Discovery Channel and Deadliest Catch enough. We hope you were able to tune in to the show last year, and see our story unfold. Again, we are so thankful for this opportunity to have a world wide platform to raise awareness for ALS. Pat was a really really great guy and ALS is truly horrible. We hope to be able to help find a treatment for the disease by our continued involvement with ALS TDI, Discovery channel, and Deadliest Catch.
I've posted some pictures from the past year, and a Discovery Channel video as well.
Next blog post I'll be talking about beer, a restaurant, Brenna A gear, the boats, life, ALS and what ever else strikes me!
This season, season 12 + 1, has finished filming and the Season Premier is April 11th. We hope you watch!
Overall, the season for us was good. But as always the unexpected can happen. Our fishing community suffered a tremendous loss when the FV Destination was lost with all 6 crew members on board. We continue to send out thoughts and prayers to the owners of the vessel and the families of all the crew.
Thanks for reading and thanks for your support,
Help us #endals at ALS TDI