Tom Crager Bio

From Tom Crager, October 23, 2010:

After graduating from MCHS in 1957, I fulfilled the active duty portion of my enlistment in the U.S. Navy. Free at last in 1960, I spent the next few years in the yacht maintenance business in King Harbor. Did a lot of sailing and skin diving in those early years.

Somehow, in 1964, I found myself diving off a commercial abalone boat out of Santa Barbara. We mostly worked the Channel Islands. This "job" and sailboat racing occupied most of my time in the mid-60's. Late 60's found us engaged in oil industry diving in Ecuador, Florida and Southern California, along with the abalone business.

Expanding my commercial fishing business in 1974, I built the boat that would be my last. "Dusky", a 42' Vega fiberglass troller could pack 10 tons of frozen tuna and stay at sea over two weeks. As it turned out, this boat was "my home at sea" for the next 28 years. It saw us through many adventures, good times and bad over the years

About 1996, I retired from the commercial diving side of the business and concentrated on salmon and albacore in season until we sold "Dusky" in 2002 and I was able to retire full time. Home ports of San Pedro, Channel Islands and finally Morro Bay gave us the flexibility to make a move from Ventura, CA to Lake Havasu City, AZ in 1992. It really didn't matter where home was. I would usually spend the summers chasing albacore off Oregon or Washington anyway, it was a long commute!

My wife Karen of 28 years played a major roll all these years, putting up with this lifestyle (and me) which is a challenge and she kept all the "wheels turning" on the beach, while working at the local hospital for 14 years in Medical Records.

For leisure time we have been able to do a lot of traveling and camping over the years. Us and our little trailer can usually be found on some mountain top in Utah or Colorado during summer (although it's a dry heat!)

Tom and petroglyphs - 2008
Click on image to see a larger one

A special passion of mine is amateur archeology. I spend a lot of time crawling in and out of the canyons in Arizona and Utah photographing prehistoric ruins and rock art left by ancestral Indian peoples. Karen shares a lot of this with me, but my old hiking partners are falling apart, so I make some trips solo.

We are both in good shape "for the shape we are in". We have a good orthopod friend out here who keeps our backs, knees, shoulders bolted up and in good repair. We are looking forward to many more years of active life along with our faithful Golden Retriever, River.

Tom Crager, October 23, 2010