The Crew

Both Shannon and Denise are from military families and as such, they moved around quite a bit in their younger years.

Back in the 1960’s their fathers were stationed in Germany while in the Canadian military. Shannon’s family had a chance to live in a small German village called “Lichtenau” and rented a flat from a German farmer and his family. After a year, Shannon’s father had to move the family closer to work and so they moved out of Lichtenau and into PMQ’s at 4 Wing , Baden Baden. In August 1970, Shannon’s family moved back to Canada. At the exact same time (August 1970) Denise’s family moved from another Canadian Forces base in Germany to 4 Wing . They decided to move into a small town off the military base and that small town just happened to be “Lichtenau”. Although Denise and Shannon never met until years later, they had a uncanny connection of having lived as children in the same small village on the other side of the world from Canada.

They eventually did meet in 1983 and although their individual journeys led them in different directions, their paths continued to cross throughout the following two decades.

In 2010 they reconnected once again and after a number of months, decided that their love of family, life, adventure  and one another ,would be further enriched if they spent the remainder of their lives together.

Shannon is from Vancouver Island, specifically the Comox Valley. His teen years were spent swimming in Puntledge River as well as the many beaches in the area. He sailed FJ’s, Lasers, Hobie 16’s and was crew aboard a Catalina 35. In the late 70’s he worked on oil rigs in Alberta while going to university.  He joined the Canadian military in 1986 and was employed on SAR Squadrons (413, Summerside PEI, 442 Comox BC) as a SAR helicopter pilot. After 10 years in the military, Shannon flew commercially throughout the world. He now works as a consultant for offshore helicopter aviation projects.

Denise is from Sheet Harbour, Nova Scotia. As mentioned, her family was posted overseas and consequently, she spent much of her younger years living in Germany. Denise returned to Canada as a teenager and within a year was living in the Comox Valley. Denise spent her summers swimming at different spots throughout the valley and loved Stokum Falls. Denise moved to England for 5 years in the 80’s and graduated as a Registered Nurse. During this time, some summers were spent fishing commercially on the west coast of British Columbia. Denise continues to work as an RN on Vancouver Island. She loves the ocean and is looking forward to future adventures  aboard “Soul Balladeer”


“Every step I have taken in life, has brought me back to you”

9 thoughts on “The Crew

  1. Susanne says:

    Your post, The Crew Soul Balladeer, is really well written and insightful. Glad I found your website, warm regards from Susanne!

  2. Raffe Taker says:

    What a beauty Shannon, that boat is nice to! I’m very glad for you both, I’ll be looking forward to a quiet ride out in the straight with a nice glass of wine. Where are you going to mount the down riggers though? ;-D

  3. Gavin Lee says:

    Well done on your new vessel and web page. You know how to find me…1-800-RESCUE.


  4. Will Sturgeon says:

    Shannon and Denise, just had your site relayed to me from a fellow in Campbell River who had expressed interest in purchasing my boat – ‘Poet’ – CT37 (Tayana) Pilothouse over in Powell River. Listed with PBB for pics. Not in the same league as your beautiful ship. And great site layout…really enjoyed Mark Knopfler’s ‘In The Sky’. He”s another great Poet. Savour your adventures…
    “Face eagerly, with optimism,
    Each fresh new Morn…
    For steadily rushes
    The endless Night,
    To snuff, like candles, burning bright,
    Those distant dreams
    Within your sight…
    They flicker, dim,
    And die within
    The Dark which has no Dawn.”

    Didn’t notice any mention of your sea miles, and
    I too was once a Purist, but unless you have a down-haul on that jib, you might consider a ‘Furler”, lol. Happy Sailing. Will

    • Hi Will,

      Thanks for the stopping by. I’ll check out your boat on PBB.
      I’m contemplating a boom furler for both the main and mizzen, along with furlers for the jib and staysail. Waiting to hear back from Schaefer on the price. Might get ugly early. 🙂
      Great poem!


  5. Christian Berg-Hansen says:

    Hello Shannon and Denise. My name is Christian Berg-Hansen and own / care for a sister to Soulballadeer. SV Allure is hull number 6 and she and I have been together for 7 years now. I would love to touch base and talk about our boats. Sounds like you have been through just about every nook and cranny and I would love to share my knowledge and experience of working on my boat.

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