Betty Nissen's Cruising Dream - Sail Magazine

Betty Nissen's Cruising Dream

Betty Nissen had a dream for a life at sea. Sixty years ago, she and her husband, John, co-founded what is now the largest organization for voyaging cruisers in the world.
Author:
Publish date:
Home%20600

Betty Nissen had a dream for a life at sea. Sixty years ago, she and her husband, John, co-founded what is now the largest organization for voyaging cruisers in the world.

Nissen, 89, co-founder of the Seven Seas Cruising Association, died at her home in St. Augustine, Florida on August 26, 2012. Nissen is survived by her husband, John, 91. She had a natural zeal for cruising and a firm determination to pursue her dream.

 “We had one dream. To go cruising! Boats, boats, boats and the day we would set to sea, we lived and breathed it,” Nissen said of herself and her husband in her last interview.

The Nissens, who met at a dance when Betty was 19, spent 15 years living and breathing their dream aboard a 45ft ketch, Norwind, sailing from California through the Panama Canal to the Virgin Islands. 

Members of the SSCA remember Nissen not only for her enthusiasm but also for her award-winning skills as an artist. She designed the original artwork for the cover of the monthly SSCA Commodores’ Bulletin.

The SSCA, which is based in Florida, prides itself on sharing cruising information, fostering camaraderie and leaving a clean wake. The elegant words on the homepage of the worldwide organization’s website perhaps best reflect Nissen’s curiosity and determination.

“The need to know what lies beyond the next wave and over the far horizon is pervasive.”

Photo courtesy of Barbara Theisen, SSCA

Related

SouthernOcean

The 50th Anniversary of the Golden Globe

Here we go! The 50th anniversary of the Golden Globe, the first singlehanded nonstop round-the-world race, is upon us. On July 1 one tribute event, the Golden Globe Race 2018, will start out of Les Sables d’Olonne, France, with a fleet of 19 amateur skippers setting out in ...read more

180621-X01-Landing-Page

Volvo Ocean Race Cliffhanger

After racing over 44,000 miles round the world and battling their way past the world’s great capes, including the Cape of Good Hope and Cape Horn, it’s all come down to the final 700-mile leg from Gothenburg, Sweden, to the Hague. Brunel, Mapfre, Dongfeng: going into the ...read more

Stearns Photo

Racing the Solo Mac for a Cause

There are plenty of reasons to do a Chicago-Mac race, and Rich Stearns, who has done literally dozens of ‘em should know. This year, though, he’s doing the Solo-Mac for an especially important reason: to help those with prostate cancer.“Two years ago, I was diagnosed with ...read more

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell.Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.comRafting dangerOne unseen danger when sailing yachts lie alongside one another for a convivial night is that if they happen roll to a wash or begin to move in an unexpected sea, the spreaders can clash ...read more

180615-01 Lead

A Dramatic Comeback in the Volvo

After winning three of the last four legs in the Volvo Ocean Race (and coming in second in the fourth), Dutch-flagged Brunel is now tied for first overall with Spanish-flagged Mapfre and Chinese-flagged Dongfeng following the completion of Leg 10 from Cardiff, Wales, to ...read more

MFS-5-2018-Propan-SP02

Tohatsu LPG-powered 5hp Propane Motor

Gassing it UpTired of ethanol-induced fuel issues? Say goodbye to gasoline. Japanese outboard maker Tohatsu has introduced an LPG-powered 5hp kicker that hooks up to a propane tank for hours of stress-free running. Available in short-, long- or ultra-long-shaft versions, the ...read more