Islanders rally to raise funds for fisherman's family

By Beth A. Birmingham | Aug 25, 2014
Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham The lobster boat Outnumbered used by Jeremy Philbrook sits at dry dock on Vinalhaven Aug. 21. The fisherman died in an accident Aug. 13.

Vinalhaven — "It's unbelievable what this community can do," said Linda Lapointe, Aug. 21 in talking about fundraisers that are in place for the family of Jeremy Philbrook, who died in a fishing accident Aug. 13.

The community of Vinalhaven is rallying around Jeremy's family — he left behind a wife, Keeley McCarthy and three daughters Caroline, 16, Ava, 9, and Alice, who turned 1 Aug. 15.

On Aug. 20,  Greet's Eats — owned and operated by Jeremy's mother-in-law Greta McCarthy — served lobster rolls that were from lobsters salvaged from Jeremy’s traps.

The community is also rallying with a potluck supper Thursday, Aug. 28, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Union Church. No tickets are required, and it is by donation only. It is reported that fellow Vinalhaven lobstermen are donating one crate from each haul for Jeremy's Family Fund.

"We join together now — to help Keeley and her family," states a flier advertising the event.

"If a little piece of Vinalhaven is somewhere in your heart, and you wish to help, please send your donation to: Vinalhaven Community Outreach, P.O. Box 331, Vinalhaven, ME 04863. All donations go directly to the family." Please add  "Philbrook Fund" in the memo line.

A service was held Aug. 24, followed by a celebration of life.

Our Daily Bread Bakery held a fundraiser last week and raised more than $3,000 for the cause.

Melissa Thissell, branch supervisor of Camden National Bank on the island, has set up a GoFundMe account. To donate go to

Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or via email at

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Staff Profile

Beth Birmingham
Staff Reporter
594-4401 ext. 125
Email Me

Beth rejoined Courier Publications' news staff in February 2013. She previously worked at The Courier-Gazette from 1981 to 1990.

Her coverage area includes Warren, Union, Friendship, Waldoboro, Washington and RSU40.

Beth has a passion for photography, and a degree from the University of Maine at Augusta, in affiliation with the Maine Photographic Workshop in Rockport.

Aside from photography, Beth enjoys working out, ocean therapy sessions and walks along the waterfront, as well as other outdoor activities. She has a daughter, Claire, who is 16.

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