Writer series ends on March 21 with ‘Sky Pilot of the Great Lakes’

March 12, 2019

Writer series ends on March 21 with ‘Sky Pilot of the Great Lakes’

PERE MARQUETTE TOWNSHIP — The Winter Writer Series sponsored by the Sable Point Lighthouse Keepers Association and Mason County Historical Society (MCHS), will present its final author and speaker John Kotzian, Thursday evening, March 21, 2019, at 7 p.m.  The presentation, entitled “Sky Pilot of the Great Lakes” will be given in the Fellowship Hall at the Ludington United Methodist Church, 5810 W. Bryant Road.

The book “Sky Pilot of the Great Lakes” tells the life story of the Rev. William H. Law, a story that has never been told before.

The Reverend Law was in peril on the Great Lakes and was rescued by the U.S. Life Saving Service crew. As a result of that rescue, seeing their heroic efforts first hand, Reverend Law dedicated his life to the men and women stationed at Light and Life-Saving Stations throughout the United States. Whether it was bringing his “Floating Library” to stations located on the Great Lakes, regular correspondence with crews of stations far too remote for personal visits, or his relentless pursuit of Congress to approve a bill to provide better pay and pensions, Reverend Law became a fast friend to those serving the Lighthouses and Life-Saving Services.

John Kotzian, was born in Rogers City, Michigan located on the shores of Lake Huron and raised some 30 miles away in Hillman, Michigan. He is the great-great –grandson of the Reverend Law.  John’s passion for the Great Lakes and history grew from the maritime stories handed down through both sides of his family.  John tells us that “Sky Pilot” was sailor slang for a chaplain. John says “this is a tale of unconquerable optimism, the story of W.H. Law’s life is as much an account of the brave men and women of the Lighthouse Service and the Life-Saving Service as it is the saga of a long and rewarding life in the service of others.”

“The speaker series has been and is a great chance for us as a community to get together and celebrate our rich heritage,” said SPLKA director Peter Manting. “This year we were privileged to be able to show the PBS program “Guardians of the Great Lakes” and to have maritime author and shipwreck explorer Valerie VanHeest back with us again speaking on the ‘1940 Armistice Day Storm.’ To have author John Kotizan with us for our final evening is very exciting indeed.”

The Thursday evening presentation is open to the public with a small donation of $5 to cover costs.

For information about this presentation in the speaker series, please call SPLKA at 845-7417, or MCHS at 843-4808, or email Peter Manting at splkadirector@gmail.com or Eric Harmsen at eric@plmmhistory.org



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