Early June targeted for ‘Voici’ sinking

If all goes according to plan, the stripped-down freighter Voici Bernadette will be sunk to her final resting place off the coast of St. Lucie County in June.

“The vessel has already passed United States Coast Guard inspection and we are waiting to get additional concrete to help stabilize her,” said Jim Oppenborn, St. Lucie County Coastal Resources Coordinator, in an email update on the ship.

The county hopes to sink the ship the morning of Saturday, June 8. The date is subject to approval of McCulley Marine Services’ float plan.

Organizers are still raising funds to assist in artificial reef construction and other water improvements projects, including oyster reefs, snorkel trails and a baffle box for Indian River Drive.

The Voici Bernadette has been stripped of all non-sea-safe items, including portholes and mechanics. At least one brass window from the ship has been converted into an end table by a local artist. Other items removed from the freighter have been put up for auction.

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