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Old 20-02-2012, 11:21   #1
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John Fairfax , Man Who Crossed Oceans in Rowboats , Dies

Didn't look like this made it to the site yet...

John Fairfax, the first known person to row alone across the Atlantic Ocean, has died at his Las Vegas-area home. He was 74.

John Fairfax, who crossed oceans in rowboats, dies - Yahoo! News
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Old 20-02-2012, 15:53   #2
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Re: John Fairfax, who crossed oceans in rowboats dies

He crossed the Atlantic in '69 and the Pacific in '72; rowing through storms and fending off sharks. RIP John.

I wonder:

- how he kept his paper charts dry?
- what he ate without fridge?
- how to use a sextant from a rowboat?
- if he had legal anti fouling?

EDIT: what a guy, read this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Fairfax_(rower)

ciao!
Nick.
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Old 20-02-2012, 16:05   #3
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Re: John Fairfax, who crossed oceans in rowboats dies

It's always interesting where people end up after getting famous for something they did on the water. Sometimes it is far inland.

Robin Graham, the author of Dove, settled in Montana.
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Old 21-02-2012, 00:26   #4
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Re: John Fairfax, who crossed oceans in rowboats dies

This made the Canadian news this evening. Hell of a life.
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Old 21-02-2012, 09:01   #5
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Re: John Fairfax , Man Who Crossed Oceans in Rowboats , Dies

These long-distance rowers are incredible. We were at Nelson's Dockyard in Antigua when the winner of the trans-Atlantic rowing race (yes the are enough people to race them) came in. He did not look at all like someone who had been through an ordeal, but boy did he look fit. Rowed up to the dock, got out, accepted a cold one and just chatted with people.

BTW, there were one-person and two-person classes and this guy was a week ahead of the first two-person boat.
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Old 21-02-2012, 10:10   #6
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Re: John Fairfax , Man Who Crossed Oceans in Rowboats , Dies

Some other excellent details of Fairfax's life. A larger-than-life guy. . .

John Fairfax Loved Hookers: Ten 'Juicy' Stories Omitted From His NYT Obit

John Fairfax Loved Hookers:


Ten ‘Juicy’ Stories Omitted From His NYT Obit

The New York Times obituary celebrating 74-year-old John Fairfax's life reads like a crazed Hemingway diary entry. In addition to his passion for exploration and adventure, it turns out that "Lone Wolf" Fairfax also hated children, loved money, and had a penchant for whorehouses.
New York Times obit writer Margalit Fox told the Observer that the published piece was a condensed and conservative version of the original one she had written, parsed down for the "family newspaper." A piece on Fairfax- courtesy of the Ocean Rowing Society website-details his many whorehouse dalliances, but was too much for the modest Times reader.
Fox described the Rowing Society article as "very long, very juicy," and it is both of those. From smuggling to shark fights, here are ten things left out of John Fairfax's obituary:
  • When Fairfax was asked what he did for a living, he would usually answer, "I'm a professional adventurer. I not only enjoy it, I try to make money off it."
  • He was, he admits, a horrible kid, an only child spoiled rotten by his mother and nanny. "We had money," he says, "and I got everything I wanted. What I lacked was a father for an authority figure. It made me an opinionated little brat. To this day, I don't like children because they remind me of myself as a kid."
  • "[The Boy Scouts] were on a snow camping trip," he recalls, "but the first night we stayed in a hut. After an argument I had with another boy, I went and got the pistol I knew our leader kept in his gear. I stood outside and started firing at the hut, where all the boys were sleeping. Those military bullets penetrated the wooden hut like it was made of paper."
  • After Fairfax emptied the gun, the troop leader rushed out and grabbed it from him. Livid, he slapped John, who responded by kneeing him in the groin.
  • He met a Chinese call girl there, and after three months she had managed to make all his money disappear.
  • Fairfax, the lone reader on the crew, became their spokesman, prompting the captain to threaten his life, which prompted Fairfax to flee to Panama.
  • There he met a pirate, the biggest smuggler in Panama. "I told him I'd like to try my hand at smuggling. His response was to take me to a whorehouse and put me in bed between two whores. He said if I survived the night and they approved of me, I could work for him. I was so drunk, I don't remember anything.
  • I went all over the world, smuggling guns, whiskey, and cigarettes. Over the next three years I learned navigation and made my first million.
  • He hid out in a whorehouse for two weeks and then skippered a boat to Jamaica, where he worked as a fisherman for a year. After returning to Panama, he was involved in a shoot-out and had to leave the country with only the clothes on his back.
  • After fifteen minutes of teasing one of the most dangerous animals on earth, he was confident the shark was beginning to show signs of a nervous breakdown.
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Old 22-02-2012, 04:15   #7
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Re: John Fairfax , Man Who Crossed Oceans in Rowboats , Dies

After looking at some of the other links about the guy, he sure had one hell of a life. Almost looks like things made up for the movies.

Just goes to show there are some people that live their lives in a way that makes everyone else's life seem boring. He definitely made an adventure out of his life.
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