Cooper, Russ oral history interview

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Fraser River
Westminster Tugs

Russ Cooper is a retired tugboat captain who worked on the waterfront for over 40 years. His family started and ran Westminster Tugboats, and he knew early that he wanted to work on the water. He tells the story of how his grade 1 workbook asked the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?” and how he knew that the answer was “tugboat captain.” He shares his story of being a tugboat captain, and the various changes to the fleet of his company in the face of an evolving industry. He discusses the volatile business environment among the competitors on the water, and the various companies that made and make up the industry throughout his time. In his career he worked for Marpole Towing, Gilley Brothers, Western Tug and Barge and Vancouver Tug before he returned to Westminster Tugs for the remainder of his career.

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Interview with Russ Cooper