Salem’s “Friendship” Captain Remembered

Sept. 2, 2010: A recent article By Bruno Matarazzo Jr. in the Salem News recounts the passing of James Fox Jr., a man with a lifelong passion for sailing and the sea.

Mattarazzo writes that Fox was always “looking for an adventure, and it almost always involved the sea.”

The article continues:

He grew up so close to the ocean in Revere that he could smell the salt air each day as a kid. But getting out into the water required persistence. He would be known by local fishermen there as “the kid around marina.”

“He bummed every ride he possibly could on a fishing boat,” said his daughter, Diane Denman of Beverly.

When he was 8, he built his own rowboat. Later in life he skippered a more significant vessel—the Friendship, a replica of the original 1797 merchant ship, now docked at the Salem Maritime National Historic Site.

“He always needed an adventure going on,” said his other daughter, Leanne Smith of Salem.

He told them often: “I never said no to an adventure, I never said no to a dance.”

Fox died Aug. 17 at Kaplan Family Hospice Home in Danvers following an eight-month battle with melanoma. He was 68.

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