Dodge David Morgan

DodgeHARPSWELL -- Dodge David Morgan, of Snow Island in Harpswell, passed away on Sept. 14, 2010, due to complications from cancer surgery. His close family surrounded Dodge and he was at peace. He died well.

Dodge will be remembered by those who knew him best for his glowing smile, offbeat sense of humor, powerful optimism and his immense generosity. He will be remembered by many more for his significant accomplishments and awards earned throughout the course of his life.

Dodge was born in 1932 in Malden, Mass. He graduated from Governor Dummer Academy in 1950, noted as the star of the track, football, tennis and basketball teams. He attended University of New Hampshire until 1951, when he joined the U.S. Air Force and earned a rank of first lieutenant serving as a fighter pilot for five years. Returning to college in 1957, he graduated magna cum laude from the Boston University School of Journalism.

Dodge's career took him to Alaska, where he worked as a reporter for the Anchorage Daily News. There he also founded an advertising, public relations and lobbying agency. His early success provided the opportunity to purchase the schooner Coaster in his hometown of Harwich Port, Mass., and from Cape Cod he set out on a two-year adventure taking him to Maine, the Caribbean, South America, the Society Islands, Hawaii and back to Alaska.

Dodge came back to Massachusetts and worked for Worcester Controls Corp. as a marketing manager and division head in electronics. He then became Founder and CEO of Controlonics Corp., a communications products manufacturer. The company was founded with three people in a garage in Littleton, Mass., and grew to 355 employees and $40 million in revenue. It was profitable. Controlonics was sold to Dynatech Corporation in 1984, giving Dodge the chance to fulfill his life-long dream of sailing around the world.

Dodge is best known for his record-breaking solo circumnavigation, sailing non-stop around the globe in 150 days, one hour and six minutes. He planned and completed the record-breaking sail becoming the first American and third person ever to accomplish the feat and was credited with 11 world records including Guinness Book of Records, first American and fastest solo, non-stop circumnavigation. His time on ham radios made him friends around the world in addition to the ones at home. Logs and records from Dodge's voyage are now being catalogued at the Maine Maritime Museum, where they are available to the public.

Dodge is the author of 'The Voyage of American Promise', based on the logs and recollections of his non-stop circumnavigation, and the documentary film 'Around Alone' about the planning and execution of the voyage was shown on PBS and is available on DVD.

More recently Dodge was owner of alternative newspapers championing the independent spirit and free speech that he stood up for, The Maine Times and The Casco Bay Weekly. In 1986 Dodge help found VXI Corporation, a communications headset company in Rollingsford, N.H., and served until present day as Chairman.
Dodge's distinctions were many: Member of the Corporation, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute; Associate, Boston Museum of Science; Cruising World Offshore Sailor of the Year, 1986; Golden Globe Award, Slocum Society; Sailing Hall of Fame, Newport, R.I.; New England Sports Hall of Fame; Award of Distinction, Boston University School of Communications; Distinguished Alumni Award, BU; Honorary, Doctorate, University of New England; Honorary Doctorate, Babson College; and Honorary Doctorate, Maine Maritime Academy.

Dodge is survived by his son, Hoyt David Morgan, daughter, Kimberley Promise Morgan; his fiancee Mary Beth Teas; and hundreds of family and friends whose lives he touched.

Services will be private at a later date. Arrangements are under the guidance of Hobbs Funeral Home, 230 Cottage Rd., South Portland. Condolences may be expressed to the family online at

In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Dodge David
Morgan's honor to The DanaFarber Cancer Institute.

Article about Dodge in the Portland Press Herald - click here.