SOUTHWEST HARBOR — A GoFundMe campaign that launched on Dec. 22 to recover local fisherman Nahum Kelley’s sunken lobster boat exceeded its initial goal in less than a week thanks in part to one large donation that came in just days after Christmas.
Started by Beal’s Lobster Pound Manager Justin Synder, the Kelley Family Support Fund reached its goal of $20,000 by Dec. 30 following a $10,000 donation from the owner of the yacht Untethered, who asked not to be identified but who summers in Northeast Harbor.
The day after Kelley’s boat sank, the town of Southwest Harbor held a special meeting to authorize Harbormaster Oliver Curry to recover it.
An amount of $10,000 is owed to Charles Bradley Marine Construction and the Hinckley Company Boatyard for the salvage of Kelley’s boat. Though the town did not allocate any money for the salvage, the Department of Environmental Protection made an offer to do so.
The boat is considered a total loss. Aside from the salvage costs, Kelley says it will cost him between $50,000-$70,000 for a used lobster boat.
Kelley says he is beyond grateful for how generous people are. “It’s just a real testament of how special the MDI community is when their neighbors are in need,” he said.
With the $20,000 goal reached, the fundraiser has continued and, as of press time, has raised $25,800.
“There’s a lot more donations coming as well, both directly and through GoFundMe. It’s certainly going to go way beyond the goal,” said Synder.