Newport Shipyard Personality: David Ray
When it comes to my partner, David Ray, I (Charlie) have to grab a pen! We're best friends who compete like crazy..... on just about anything. A magazine writer one time asked my daughter, Belle, if she knew of the "competition" between David and her father...... to which she simply answered, "all my life"!
David was ground zero at Newport Shipyard, as he was at his "ground zero", Bannister's Wharf...... the most popular destination in Newport. His ownership percentage has waned, but he has been there every step of the way, from the days we were fingerprinted in 1998 in order to bid for the Shipyard in Bankruptcy Court. David says he told me about it..... yet (of course) I in fact told him! What really matters, however, is we both committed to saving the Shipyard on a fateful night by phone when I was offshore "on watch".
It was brutally hard and complicated work at first cleaning up a defunct dirty commercial operation in the middle of Newport, with major problems hitting us from every direction and no money flowing to help. I always say that David has the best ideas in the room at a meeting..... and his "street smarts" served us well. He's fun too, and I still laugh when I look around each day at some of his observations from that early time.
So..... from this I hope you realize that I now run a better wharf than David, sail faster in my boat, appear more youthful than him, and could use some help in reminding him that Feb 6th is his Godson Nick Dana's 21st birthday, who is expecting "great things"!