Tribute paid to renowned naval architect as he loses Alzheimer's battle
After a long and courageous battle with Alzheimer’s disease,
Bristolian William Harold Shaw died at home last Sunday August 20
surrounded by his family,. He leaves his beloved wife of 55 years,
Elizabeth “Beth” Thomson Shaw.
After the Korean War Bill was able to pursue his dream of becoming a naval
architect, initially joining the renowned firm of Sparkman & Stephens Naval
Architects and Marine Engineers in October 1952 as a designer. While at
Sparkman & Stephens he was involved in the design of many famous yachts,
including the America’s Cup defender, Columbia, as chief designer. He also
co-founded the Midget Ocean Racing Club (MORC) sparked by his design of
the Shaw 24, Trina.
In 1964 he was hired as chief naval architect for Pearson Yachts. He later
became general manager of Pearson Yachts and vice president of Grumman
Allied Industries and continued to be Pearson’s chief naval architect.
During his 27 years at Pearson, he and his team designed over 40 different
boats ? sail and power, canoes and outboard runabouts.
Under his tenure, Pearson was a nationally recognized leader in the
boating industry for building quality, family oriented racing/cruising
fiberglass boats. He was very active in numerous sailing organizations as
a member of a safety at sea committee, the IMS Technical Committee where
he drafted the first set of rules for accommodation standards on
sailboats, the National Boating Safety Advisory Council, and the
University of Rhode Island Advisory Council for Marine Programs.
He received a number of awards for his distinguished career: The Isaac B.
Merriman Award from the Barrington Yacht Club, the United States Merchant
Marine Professional Achievement Award, the Charles F. Chapman Award for
the marine industry, the Rhode Island Marine Trade Association and was
inducted into the MORC Hall of Fame.
Obituary taken from www2.eastbayri.com/Obituaries/Obituaries.cfm?pageView=Detail&obitID=961