Robert T. Healey Sr., the co-founder of the Viking Yacht Organization who assisted build the business into an business chief and led the combat that repealed the Federal Luxury Tax on yachts in the early 1990s, passed absent final 7 days at the age of 92.

“My father was a real chief, and his vision will generally tutorial us,” explained his son, Robert Healey Jr. “He thought that the men and women all around him – his household, friends and staff – lifted him to achievement and it was his obligation to depart the planet a better put.”

Bob Healey Sr. and his brother Monthly bill established Viking Yachts in 1964, and the organization went on to come to be the largest producer of activity fishing yachts in the planet. But that success may have under no circumstances been obtained devoid of the willpower and perseverance of Bob Healey. When a federal 10% luxurious tax was imposed on yachts in 1991, countless numbers of folks have been laid off and hundreds of providers went out of enterprise. Viking virtually went bankrupt, shut a plant in Florida and laid off all but 65 of its 1,500 boatbuilders.

Bob was instrumental in arranging a national, grass-roots marketing campaign to combat the tax. He took the field lead, arranging busloads of out-of-operate boatbuilders to converge on Capitol Hill for demonstrations, and placing fireplace to a boat on a barge in Narragansett Bay as a really powerful symbol of protest. The tax was repealed 20 months afterwards in 1993.

“My uncle’s endeavours to repeal the Federal Luxury Tax on yachts will never ever be overlooked,” reported Bill’s son and Viking Yachts President and CEO Pat Healey. “He saved not only Viking but the entire maritime marketplace. He was the catalyst and leader, and he would not just take ‘no’ for an solution. He was a outstanding law firm and savvy businessman who was able to convince the politicians in Washington that this was quite significantly a careers problem. It was about fantastic hardworking individuals dropping their skill to provide for their households.

Bob’s 11th-hour lobbying endeavours with Congressman Invoice Hughes, who represented N.J.’s 2nd District, aided protected the votes necessary to repeal the Luxury Tax in 1993. “It was a great victory for our family members-owned-and-operated boatbuilding firm, the people today of New Jersey and anyone in the marine field,” claimed Pat.


With Bill’s support, Bob privately funded the enterprise out of his have cost savings, enabling Viking to device up new styles. The company came out of the gate running when the tax was last but not least repealed – and they never ever appeared back.

Bob graduated from Camden Catholic Substantial School, attended St. Joseph’s College in Philadelphia, graduating with a B.S. in Political Science, and gained a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law Faculty. He practiced law in Camden County, N.J., for 25 decades in advance of retiring as a senior associate in the agency of Healey, Mueller and Tyler to commit himself full time to small business passions.

In the 1950s, his brother Monthly bill joined Bob in the true-estate enhancement small business. Between other tasks, the two brothers obtained and produced the Bass River Marina in New Gretna, N.J. In 1964 a compact, neighborhood builder of wooden boats, Peterson-Viking, was acquiring economical difficulty, and the brothers agreed to get the enterprise, adjusted the name to Viking Yachts, and relocated the enterprise to their home adjoining the marina. The boatbuilding company quickly occupied considerably of their time, so the brothers marketed the marina and concentrated on creating yachts. Bob was the firm law firm, moneyman and Chief Executive when his brother constructed the boats.

Dedicated to their mantra to create a improved boat each and every day, Bill and Bob pushed Viking to the pinnacle of their field with far more than 5,000 boats sent. They successfully steered the company via the ups and downs of economic cycles. “My father usually said, ‘We’ve worked tricky to get to the leading of the mountain, we’re experiencing the view and we’re not going to give it up,’ ” remembers Bob Jr., currently the Co-Chairman of the Viking Group, which manages Viking Yachts, Viking Investments, Viking Associates, Viking Residential and Viking Builders.

As Viking’s Chairman of the Board for 57 decades, Bob Healey Sr. diversified their monetary interests into multi-family members, industrial and industrial authentic estate, oil and gas exploration and improvement, and the money administration of the Healey loved ones property.

Jointly, Invoice and Bob Healey obtained lots of milestones. In 1996, they launched the Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA), a non-earnings business shaped in 1996 to market sustainable fisheries and a balanced maritime setting. Viking has contributed nicely in excess of $1 million to the RFA. In that exact year, the brothers established Viking Sport Cruisers, a firm that has been very successful distributing British-crafted, significant close cruising yachts, developed to Viking’s requirements, by means of its supplier community in North The usa. Bob, Bill and Pat received the Ernst & Young 1998 New Jersey Manufacturing Entrepreneur of the 12 months Award. Fifteen several years later, the family members would gain a 2nd award from Ernst & Younger.

Ironically, the Healeys bought again Bass River Marina in 2002 and reopened it as the Viking Yachting Middle. They ended up inducted in 2003 into the Nationwide Marine Brands Affiliation Hall of Fame for their outstanding contributions to the marine business.

In honor of their company and dedication to the marine sector for much more than a half a century, Bill and Bob had been honored with the 2019 IBI-METSTRADE Boat Builder Lifetime Accomplishment Award, which was acknowledged by Bob Jr.

Bob acquired many additional awards for his achievements, such as induction into the NJ Marine Trade Association Corridor of Fame and the Rowan University Milestone Award. Bob also channeled his monetary accomplishment into philanthropic interests, which involved constructing educational facilities in impoverished parts of Mexico, and delivering housing, professional medical guidance, schooling, food items and clean up drinking water to the individuals of war-torn Sierra Leone via the Healey International Aid Foundation. “My father was a good gentleman with a deep religion and commitment to provider,” explained Bob Jr., who just lately declared his candidacy for Congress in New Jersey’s 3rd District. “No individual or mission was at any time a missing bring about to him. He saw the probable in all people and considered that our correct truly worth and price in lifetime is in our contributions to others.”

A devout Catholic and item of Catholic university education, Bob brought his business enterprise capabilities to the difficulties facing Catholic schools in the U.S. and shaped the Healey Schooling Basis and the Catholic Partnership Universities in Camden.

With his wife Ellen, Bob started the Gleneayre Equestrian System for at-hazard youth. The plan employs the potent relationship among horses and people today to aid discovering, development and healing.

For his philanthropic attempts, Bob been given the Lewis Katz Excellence in Training Award, the Beacon of Mild Award, the Catholic Charities Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio Award for Leadership, an Honorary Doctorate Diploma from Scranton University and the Shield of Loyola Award from St. Joseph’s College.