Blue Water Warrior – “A Hero On the Hard”
In an industry where the mindset ‘bigger is better’ and luxury is a must, smaller vessels often get over looked. And even though she may not fall into the coveted “superyacht” category, this high power, completely custom, aluminum 37’ boat deserves some serious recognition. Built right here at Lauderdale Marine Center by Captain Andrew Grego, ‘Warrior’ is nothing shy of remarkable in both her unique, physical body and for whom she represents. Warrior is the vessel used by Blue Water Warriors, a nonprofit organization which give veterans who have been injured in the line of duty an opportunity to get out on the water and heal their souls.
“She started with a vision,” says Captain Andrew. “I wanted honor those who have fought for our freedom and have lost a little of theirs. This boat was designed in such a way that even those who are wheelchair bound have the ability to partake in activities that may otherwise have been off-limits to them due to their life-changing injuries. We give our vets the opportunity to get out on the water to cruise, fish, dive, snorkel and forget about, at least for a little while, their daily struggles.” To ensure these heroes and their families will be comfortable and safe while aboard, the following accommodations were made when she was built:
- Deck-leveling boarding ramp adjustable to various dock configurations
- Specially developed non-skid surfaces
- Wheelchair accessible boarding without a hoist & locking mechanisms to secure chairs
- Offset console for wider passageway
- Storage for prosthetic limbs
- Seakeeper Gyro stabilizer to minimize boat roll and increase stability
- A custom lift that can be raised & lowered for water access
- Deck-level, wheelchair accessible bathroom facility
- Swing open transom & side doors
As impressive as she is, what makes Warrior even more special is all of the love that has gone into making her the beauty she is today. Electronics, paint and fairing, underwater lights, a generator, cleats, hinges and all of the fixes and fittings, as well as much of the labor has been generously donated by various companies and private sectors. Wanting to do our part to give back, Lauderdale Marine Center is donating a haul-out and laydays, so that Warrior can complete a full bottom job with as little cost to her as possible. Upon completion of the work, Warrior will return to the water to continue to serve those who have served for our country.
“My vision would not have been possible without the help and generosity of the South Florida Marine Industry,” remarks Captain Andrew. “I have to give credit to everyone who has helped make my Blue Water Warrior vision a reality: Karen Grego, Lauderdale Marine Center, Luu Marine, Boat Art, as well as all of the engineers, contractors, crew members & those who have donated monetarily; Warrior could not have been built without your help.”
As Warrior was set down on the hard awaiting her bottom job, Captain Andrew added, “It feels really good to be able to do something nice for others.”
If you would like to donate to this awesome organization, please visit their website at www.bluewaterwarriors.org.