Former Master of Guemes Island ferry
October 29, 1927 - May 10, 2010
The Bacetich family deeply regrets to announce the passing of Albert "Al" Anthony Bacetich, 82, of Anacortes. This sudden, unexpected loss of husband, father, and friend has left so many of us bereft beyond words.
Al spent his life in Anacortes, WA where he was born on October 29, 1927, the only child of Kuzma and Frana Bacetich. From early on, Al developed friendships as close as brotherhood that would last throughout his lifetime.
He graduated from Anacortes High School in 1947 and married Norma Jean Wudtke of Mount Vernon in 1951. Over the course of 59 years of marriage, they defined a pattern of life and love that rebuilt the house Al was born in and built up a family including three sons (Anthony, Donald and Dominic), five grandchildren (Michelle, Jeffrey, Chase, Casey and Bradon), and two great-grandchildren (Aspen and Hudson).
Al's lifelong gifts combined a gentle nature with quiet inner strength that gathered friends and devoted relations to him that spanned the generations.
A few will remember Al's musical talent playing a trumpet with a band beginning in the late 40s. Some will know Al from early days of fishing salmon in Alaska and his part in the first wintertime king crab excursions ever taken on, or from his truck driving days building the Baker Dam and roadways.
Many more remember Al for his expertise as The Master of the Guemes Island ferry onboard the M/V Almar and the M/V Guemes, which he captained for 25 years until retirement from Skagit County.
There are still so many others who knew Al for his quiet but innovative talents to fix, rescue, comfort and consult: the companion who would weather the storm of any crisis, the craftsman who could effect any repair from major overhaul to the most delicate clockwork, the advisor whose hands-on action went far beyond any words, the leader who never left the helm, whether seas were calm or treacherous, until all was well, safe and secure.
A memorial gathering celebrating Al?s life will be announced and held at a later date. For now, let the hearts of family and friends go out to one another in sharing both loss and promise to this unspoken hero: "O Captain" (our Captain!), we will follow the course you've set.
Arrangements are in the care of Evans Funeral Chapel & Crematory, Inc., Anacortes, WA and the San Juan Islands. To share memories of Al, please sign the online guest register at www.evanschapel.com.