Petersburg Pilot -

Thompson steps back and two new women captains step up


Photo courtesy of Joe Sebastian

Captain Abby Hosier, left, takes a break to capture a moment aboard the St. Lazaria with deckhands Dana Bronkala, center, and Kate Thompson, right. The all-female tender crew recently completed the Sitka sac roe herring fishery together on the 104-year old wooden vessel.

When Kate Thompson was small, her father Harold made a perch in the wheelhouse of the St. Lazaria, so she could be atop the console, see out the window and keep him company as he steered. But once she was big enough, she put down her toy radio and began working on boats herself.

During the recent Sitka sac roe herring fishery, Thompson, now 15, worked as a deckhand on the St. Lazaria. It was technically her seventeenth season doing herring, if you count the one she spent aboard the St. Lazeria while her mother was pregnant. But this was her first season without her parents running the boat....

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