Charles "Chuck" Husick, editor of "Chapman's Piloting and Seamanship," former chairman and president of the Chris-Craft Boat Co., freelance writer for numerous boating magazines and longtime public policy advocate for the nation's boat owners, died Monday at his home in St. Petersburg, Fla., after a lengthy illness.
Husick came to the attention of the boating public in the late 1980s when he took the helm of the ailing Chris-Craft. The company had been under scrutiny for months by the BoatU.S. Consumer Protection Bureau for building boats that had delamination problems.
Rather than stonewall the allegations, Husick immediately promised to get to the root of the problem and fix things. BoatU.S. officials were so pleased by his forthright pro-consumer approach that he was the first industry veteran named to the BoatU.S. National Advisory Council, a post he held until his passing.
Although Husick was first and foremost an engineer who worked on the Gemini manned space program and held senior positions at Cessna Aircraft Co. and Fairchild Industries, he was also a bluewater sailor and a pilot who rose to the top public-policy ranks of the marine and general aviation industries. He served on the board of the Radio Technical Commission for Marine Services, an industry/government group that coordinates marine electronic standards for the United States, and as chairman of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association.
He held a 100-ton Coast Guard Master's License, taught courses in marine diesel engines and marine electrical systems in his spare time, and his long-running "Ask Chuck" column in BoatU.S. Magazinewas his forum to respond to and explain the mysteries of modern marine technology. He also was a contributing editor to major boating publications such as Sail, Cruising World, Power & Motoryacht, Yachting, Ocean Navigator and Southern Boating. He also was a frequent contributor to Soundings, Trade Only's sister magazine.
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