Dakota Creek Industries Co-founder Dick Nelson Dies

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

February 2, 2021

Dick Nelson is second from left, during the christening of auxiliary general oceanographic research (AGOR) vessel R/V Sally Ride (AGOR 28) at Dakota Creek Industries in 2014. (Photo: John F. Williams / U.S. Navy)

Dick Nelson is second from left, during the christening of auxiliary general oceanographic research (AGOR) vessel R/V Sally Ride (AGOR 28) at Dakota Creek Industries in 2014. (Photo: John F. Williams / U.S. Navy)

Richard "Dick" Nelson, co-founder of shipbuilding and repair yard Dakota Creek Industries, has passed away after a battle with cancer. He was 78.

Nelson began his shipbuilding career in 1963 at Weldcraft Steel Works, a shipyard in Bellingham, Wash. before going on to co-found Post Point Shipyard and then Dakota Creek Industries.

When Post Point Shipyard was sold, Nelson co-founded Dakota Creek Industries as a ship repair yard in Blaine, Wash., in 1975. Two years later, Dakota Creek moved to Anacortes, Wash., enabling the company to also build new vessels, including fishing vessels, tug boats, and commercial as well as government vessels.

"Dick taught us many things, but most of all he drilled it into us that DCI employees are the true assets of the company—a company that he was extremely proud of," the shipyard said in a statement following Nelson's passing. "He was a visionary leader, inspiring mentor and beloved friend. His legacy will live on in the projects we complete with pride and integrity, and with the trademark quality that Dakota Creek is known for worldwide. We are honored to have known him and will dedicate our work to his memory, which is the sincerest form of tribute."

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