Bobby Shatford

Summary: Bobby Shatford was a Massachusetts native and a commercial fisherman who lived in Gloucester. He is remembered for his bravery and sacrifice as one of six crew members aboard the Andrea Gail, a fishing vessel lost at sea during the Perfect Storm of 1991.

1. A Life at Sea

Bobby Shatford grew up in Gloucester, Massachusetts, a coastal town with a rich history of fishing. He came from a family of fishermen and began working on boats at a young age. Shatford loved the ocean and the sense of freedom it gave him, but he also knew the dangers that came with the job. Despite the risks, he continued to work as a commercial fisherman and became skilled at his trade.

Shatford’s main source of income came from swordfishing, a dangerous and demanding profession that required him to spend long periods at sea. He earned a reputation as a hard worker and a loyal friend to his fellow crew members. Shatford had a girlfriend named Christina Cotter and a daughter named Marissa, whom he loved deeply and missed when he was away.

Shatford was a hardworking and experienced fisherman, but he never could have predicted the events that would eventually lead to his death in 1991.

2. The Perfect Storm

In October 1991, a massive storm system formed off the coast of Nova Scotia. The storm eventually collided with a cold front and hurricane, creating what is now known as the Perfect Storm. The Andrea Gail was one of several fishing vessels caught in the storm as it intensified.

The crew of the Andrea Gail consisted of six men, including Captain Billy Tyne and Bobby Shatford. The storm battered their boat with waves over 100 feet tall and winds exceeding 100 miles per hour. Despite their best efforts, the crew was unable to navigate the treacherous conditions and the boat was lost at sea.

The loss of the Andrea Gail and its crew members was a tragedy that shook the town of Gloucester and the fishing community as a whole.

3. Remembering Bobby Shatford

Bobby Shatford is remembered by those who knew him as a hardworking and dedicated fisherman with a zest for life. His tragic death in the Perfect Storm has been memorialized in multiple ways, including a biography by Sebastian Junger titled “The Perfect Storm” and a film adaptation of the book starring Mark Wahlberg as Shatford.

In Gloucester, a memorial statue was erected in honor of the six crew members lost on the Andrea Gail, including Bobby Shatford. The statue depicts a swordfish, a nod to the crew’s profession, and serves as a reminder of the dangers of working at sea.

Bobby Shatford’s legacy lives on through the memories of his loved ones and the enduring impact of the Perfect Storm story. He is remembered as a brave and selfless individual who made the ultimate sacrifice while doing what he loved.


Bobby Shatford’s story is a testament to the dangers and rewards of a life at sea. As a skilled fisherman and loyal friend, he embodied the spirit of the Gloucester community and the fishing industry as a whole. His loss in the Perfect Storm of 1991 is a tragic reminder of the unpredictable and unforgiving nature of the ocean. Despite this, his memory lives on through the countless individuals who have been inspired by his bravery and dedication to his craft.

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