Thimble Island Captain Navigates Adversity to Carry on Dads Legacy

STONY CREEK, Conn (WTNH) — At 25-years-old, with a degree in American history and political science…the last thing Anna Milne thought she would be is a sea captain.

“I know the water because I grew up here. I used to drive around with my dad all day every day,” said Milne.

Anna’s dad was Captain Bob Milne.

He operated “The Volsunga” for decades, giving thousands of tours around the Thimble islands.

“He was this boat…very calm cool and collected,” said Milne.

Many in Stony Creek figured he would always be there.

But just like conditions on the water, things can quickly change.

“It was a bad motorcycle accident.  We really don’t know what happened….he fell and hit his head,” said Milne.

Bob Milne suffered a traumatic brain injury, unable to walk, talk or eat.

After the accident, Anna faced a decision.

The choice was to dock the “Volsunga” for good or carry on the family business.

“So I made the decision…….I went to sea school in Freeport, Long Island,” said Milne.

Captain Anna is now at the helm of the vessel.

“I did it for myself I did it for my dad and I did it for my community,” said Milne.

Last father’s day Captain Bob was able to come back for an emotional visit to the boat he manned for decades.

“In a way the boat is still connecting us,” said Anna Milne.

Now Captain Bob is a precious passenger, one of many as the busy summer season ramps up.

“The Volsunga and the Milnes and the Thimble Islands I feel like we are one in the same. I feel like we are all intertwined,” said Anna Milne.

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