David Brooks
March 1940-December 1971

This is David Brooks, Ondine’s Dad. These are scans of old photos; Barbara did all the work. David Brooks was a sailor and a shipbuilder and an adventurer and an artist. He or his boat – or both – made their way into at least two books (T. Jay’s Log The Last Voyage of the Frisco Felucca II by T. Jay Rockford and Daniel Parr, 1995, ISBN 0-8062-4971-4, and Sea Quest: Global Blue-Water Adventuring in Small Craft by Charles A. Borden, 1967), one novel (as the character “Goliath Rivers”), and several newspaper stories. Click on any photo to see it full-screen.

Very early 1970s? One of the things Ondine remembers about her Dad, is the way his hair and beard felt.

Late 1968-Early 1969. Here are two photos of Ondine and her Dad cruising on the Far Horizons, the trimaran David and Barbara built. Ondine still has the wheel.

Here’s T. Jay Rockford’s description of David Brooks from T. Jay’s Log:

David was strikingly energetic, always enthusiastic about living and always involved in something that kept him physically active in some speedy way. Although he wasn’t a large man, his 5’ 10” frame carried a handsome and intriguing look. His bearing and his appearance gave the impression of an excited man who had either just returned from an adventure or was about to embark upon a new one. He had yellow-green eyes, curly dark brown hair and a safari moustache over a clean-shaven, square jaw. Even the shape of his face reminded me of Jack London. He liked to wear a flowered loose shirt, when he wore a shirt, and he frequently wore a Panama hat with seashell band pulled low over his always expressive and bright eyes. He kept a small gold fish-shaped earring in one pierced earlobe; “Pisces,” he’d say when people asked him why.

1967. Liz sent us this scanned photo. The processing date along the right edge indicates October 1967, but the summery looking sky may point to an earlier actual date. That’s David in motion in the foreground, shirtless and barefoot, wearing a split-open straw hat. The others are unknown, but we think the man closest to the boat on the far right might be Jim Jorgensen, the ship’s designer.

Mid-1960s. The structure you see behind David in the first photo is the New Moon, the houseboat he and Barbara built in Sausalito and had anchored in Richardson Bay off gate five. They lived aboard, despite no running water – all the water had to be lugged aboard by rowboat. And, they had to row to work every day! Somewhere under that fantastical superstructure is a Navy surplus landing craft. The third photo offers a side view of the New Moon at anchor.

Mid-1960s? David Brooks on the New Moon in Sausalito. The first photo shows him with some of his sculptures.

March 1965. Here’s David at the wheel of an old car named “Noah,” in one of the few dated photos we have.

Early 1960s. Serving in the Navy. Barbara’s note attached to the photo says this is about the time they met.

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