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Captain John L. Charest

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My Seagoing Career

A Chronology

My Career at Sea began shortly after my graduation from Kings Point, the United States Merchant Marine Academy on August 4, 1965 when, employed by Gulf Oil Corporation, I joined the SS Gulf Stag in Tampa, FL as 3rd Mate. From this vessel, I was transferred to the Gulf Spray as 3rd Mate.

On obtaining my 2nd Mate’s License, I served aboard the Gulf Crest, the Gulf Queen, the Gulf Tiger, the Gulf Prince and the Gulf Bear as 2nd Mate.

On obtaining my Chief Mate’s License, I served aboard the Gulf King, the Gulf Spray, the Gulf Bear, The Gulf Jaguar, the Gulf Supreme, the Gulf Seal, the Gulf Queen, the Gulf Crest, and the Gulf Knight as Chief Mate. 

My first assignment as Master was aboard the Gulf Knight. From there I was assigned as Master of the VLCC American Independence until her sale to ARCO. I was then re-assigned to the Gulf Spray as Master. The Gulf Spray would be my last vessel with Gulf Oil after the company was bought out by Chevron and the vessels were sold on in 1985.

I then went to work for Amoco as Master of the tanker Delaware Sea until she was subsequently sold.


I was then employed by Marine Transport Lines as Master aboard several of their vessels. Namely, the Federal Lakes (RORO), the Marine Princess (Bulker), the Marine Duval (Sulphur Carrier), the Marine Reliance (Car Carrier), the VLCC BT Alaska, and finally the Marine Chemist, a great old ship, from which I retired on June 3, 2000.

From my sea going retirement date, I began a marine industry consulting company named Charest Marine Associates, LLC; conducting Vessel Audits for ISM, ISO, & Environmental Compliance (HSQE), and Vessel Vetting & Inspections.

I retired from this venture in early 2018 to Fiddlers Green Farm, which is my farm in Buxton, Maine.
I am also currently the Treasurer for the Portland Marine Society.