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Journeys of Discovery: Aboard John Wayne's yacht

Correspondent Tom Wilmer visits with Captain Bert Minshall aboard the "Wild Goose," a yacht formerly owned by John Wayne, berthed at Hornblower Cruises in Newport Beach Harbor in California.

Minshall signed aboard Wayne’s yacht in 1963 as a deck hand and first mate, before taking the helm as skipper in 1976 until Wayne’s death in 1979. Join Minshall as he recounts some of his favorite memories of his sixteen years serving aboard the "Wild Goose."

John Wayne was a 20th Century Hollywood icon performing in more than 150 movies, with the 1969 film "True Grit" earning him an Oscar for best actor. Wayne’s first love was the United States Navy, but when he did not receive an appointment to the Naval Academy, he carried on with his film career.

His love of the maritime world spurred Wayne to purchase a converted World War II minesweeper (YMS-328), the "Wild Goose" in 1962. The 136-foot-long yacht served as a favorite getaway vessel for Wayne to spend time with his kids and friends. Mexico and Canada were two favored nautical destinations, but he also transited the Atlantic aboard the "Wild Goose" not long after purchasing the vessel. Hollywood celebrities who spent time aboard the yacht include Bob Hope, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Lee Marvin, and Tom Jones.

Hornblower Cruises, in partnership with theJohn Wayne Cancer Foundation, is hosting a series of Friday night dinner cruises aboard the "Wild Goose" in May and early June, 2019.

Tom Wilmer produces on-air content for Issues & Ideas airing over KCBX and is producer and host of the six-time Lowell Thomas award-winning NPR podcast Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer. Recorded live on-location across America and around the world, the podcasts feature the arts, culture, music, nature, history, science, wine & spirits, brewpubs, and the culinary arts--everything from baseball to exploring South Pacific atolls to interviewing the real Santa Claus in the Arctic.
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