Pam Johnson Interview
This is an interview which was conducted on December 5, 2000 with Pam Johnson, daughter of Robert C. Rafferty, steward on the Fitz when it went down. Here are the questions asked, and Mrs. Johnson's answers.
Question: Do you think that the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald and the crew members got the attention that they deserved?
Question: What was your first reaction immediately after hearing that the Edmund Fitzgerald was missing?
Question: With all of today's technology, why do you think the wreck is still a mystery even after twenty-five years?
Question: What is your theory on how the Fitz sank?
Question: Do you think the wreck site of the Edmund Fitzgerald should be open for exploration?
Question: Still, after twenty-five years, certain people claim that the wreck was caused entirely by human error; what is your response to this Mrs. Johnson?
Question: Why is it important to learn about the tragedy of the S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald?
Question: Were you able to attend the first memorial service involving the restored bell of the Fitz?
Question: If the funding and technology was present, would you want all or part of the wreckage to be raised?
Question: How did it feel when you first heard the song, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald, and then how did it feel when you were able to meet Gordon Lightfoot at a later date?
Question: You have told me in emails that the one thing that you wanted to be able to do for the 25th anniversary was to touch the bell. How did it feel when you finally were able to?
Question: Which 25th anniversary services were you able to attend?
Question: There have been several thousand shipwrecks on the Great Lakes, with a combined death toll of about 30,000 people. Why does the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald stand out the most?
Question: What do you think the best commemoration to the Fitz and her crew has been, that you have come across?
Question: The song says, "the legend lives on from the Chippewa on down." Do you agree, and if so, will the legend ever die?
Question: How has the wreck of the Fitz affected and/or changed your life?
S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald Online. Copyright 2000-2008. All Rights Reserved.