Tower Restoration begins at Wood Isla...

Tower Restoration begins at Wood Island Lighthouse...

There are 17 comments on the MaineToday story from Oct 30, 2009, titled Tower Restoration begins at Wood Island Lighthouse.... In it, MaineToday reports that:

Biddeford Pool, ME. The Friends of Wood Island Lighthouse have announced that the first major phase of restoration at Wood Island Lighthouse has begun.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at MaineToday.


Waterville, ME

#1 Nov 15, 2009
Check out the tower restoration progress by viewing live action video. Go to the FOWIL's website at < > and find the cameras on a special webpage.
Maurene Kennedy

New Haven, CT

#2 Nov 15, 2009
On November 29, 1960, Chief John F. Kennedy, U.S.C.G. of Fletchers Neck Life Saving Station, along with his engine man Kenneth Rouleau, and the rest of his Coast Guard crew, rescued Tammy Burnham, a 2-1/2 year old light keeper's daughter at Wood Island Lighthouse, Maine. The men aboard the 30 foot lifeboat saved that little girl's life that night. Much has been marketed about the rescue in regards to "preserving the history of Wood Island Lighthouse". John F. Kennedy and Kenneth Rouleau have much to share about the history of the rescue. Both of these Coast Guard veterans are interested in sharing the interesting facts surrounding the story. It would be great if Senator Collins of Maine, who was instrumental in helping American Lighthouse Foundation and Friends Of Wood Island Lighthouse obtain a share of a $380,000.00 grant to preserve Wood Island Lighthouse history, would meet with these veterans and listen to their heroic tale. I too was there that night and I remember it well!
Margo Alley

Londonderry, VT

#3 Nov 20, 2009
A Public Statement issued 11/20/09 by Margo Alley, author of Wood Island Lighthouse – The Rescue of Tammy Burnham:

It has been brought to my attention that Maurene Kennedy of Waterford, CT has made numerous public allegations questioning the veracity of my book. I am neither compelled nor inclined to respond point by point to her statements, which I find factually baseless, disparaging and libelous. I stand 100% behind the facts, accounts and details depicted in the book. These same facts and accounts were verified and upheld by an investigation of the U.S. Coast Guard which was concluded August 1992.

As to my motivation for authoring and publishing the book: my intention was to research and reveal the truth of a controversial set of events which culminated in the brave rescue of a little girl at sea. The facts of that evening clearly support a cover-up which remained unchallenged for over thirty years. I am proud of both the results of my investigation and the public acknowledgement by the U.S. Coast Guard recognizing the heroic actions of Seaman Apprentice Edward Syvinski, EN First Class Laurier Burnham and Biddeford Pool lobsterman Preston Alley, all of whom received commendations.

Maurene Kennedy

New Britain, CT

#4 Dec 28, 2009
Margo Alley has posted an inappropriate and completely unfounded "Public Statement" about me to the comment section of this site. I have twice requested that they be removed as soon as possible. I would like to know why action has not been taken to correct this?
Margo Alley

Londonderry, VT

#5 Jan 7, 2010
Wood Island Lighthouse
The Rescue of Tammy Burnham
By Margo Alley

Journey back in time to the cold and stormy late afternoon of November 29, 1960. The wind is blowing hard, it's raining, the seas are raging with large swells and the Wood Island Lighthouse keeper's two year old child is ill and needs to be transported to the mainland.
The Coast Guard is called, but can they get her off the island and back to the mainland in the raging storm?
The story of Tammy Burnham will make you laugh, cry and gasp in disbelief! Feel the sheer terror of three men one whom was Tammy's own father and a Biddeford Pool lobsterman who were fearless of a raging ocean and the tiny seaside community that came together to help.
Learn the true and shocking accounting of the deliberate cover up that transpired on that stormy evening that took thirty-three years and a United States Coast Guard Congressional Affairs Investigation to finally uncover and reveal the hard facts!

Available from:
Maurene Kennedy

United States

#6 Feb 7, 2010
This web site is dedicated to the truth and the two U.S.C.G. veterans who participated in the actual rescue of Tammy Burnham at Wood Island Lighthouse, on November 29, 1960, Chief John F. Kennedy and Engine man Kenneth Realue. Their voices have gone unheard for too long.

Revere, MA

#7 Feb 7, 2010
does anyone know when the restoration is supposed to be completed
Margo Alley

Bangor, ME

#9 Mar 22, 2010
By Lily Burnham
March 22, 2010

On November 29, 1960, our two and a half year old daughter Tammy Burnham and Seaman Edward Syvinski were given up for “lost at sea” by USCG Chief John F. Kennedy of the U.S. Coast Guard Station at Biddeford Pool, Maine.
While attempting to transport our very ill daughter to the mainland, the skiff Kennedy commandeered capsized in the fog, rain and heavy seas. When Kennedy’s relayed message to the island was “We will look for the bodies in the morning,” my husband Laurier determined to find our daughter notified Chief John F. Kennedy that he would use his peapod boat in an effort to find them and Kennedy threatened to court martial him if he left his post. My husband did eventually find our daughter and Seaman Edward Syvinski with no thanks to Kennedy who had sent his own seaman out without so much as a life jacket.
Today, forty-nine years later Maurene Kennedy, daughter of former chief John Kennedy, has sought to disprove the true facts backed up by a thorough USCG investigation surrounding the rescue of our daughter Tammy and the cover-up of events that evening, with her own fabricated version of it. Please disregard her efforts to obtain recognition for her father based on false testimony.
For anyone who is interested in the true story of my daughters’ rescue that is nothing short of a miracle the book Wood Island Lighthouse: The Rescue of Tammy Burnham, by Margo Alley is available from
The book is the true and accurate accounting of exactly what happened from first hand eyewitness’s that were present on that dreadful evening, including myself.
Lily Burnham
Maurene Kennedy

United States

#10 Mar 22, 2010
Videos of a first hand, expert, eye witness account of the USCG rescue of Tammy Burnham at Wood Island Lighthouse can be viewed on You Tube at:

We are not seeking recognition for any individual. We are providing first hand, expert, eye witness testimony and documentation of a historical USCG rescue. None of the fabricated accounts of the rescue of Tammy Burnham that have been published have provided any reliable documentation. Lily Burnham was not a first hand eye witness account of the rescue of Tammy Burnham. On November 29, 1960, Lily Burnham, by her own account, not self-published author Margo Alley's, was recovering from very recent, major back surgery and could not possibly have witnessed any of the events of the rescue. Professional writing and documentation regarding historical events involves supporting material from reliable sources. Note that the post that contains a supposed public statement by Lily Burnham is actually posted by the self-published author of Wood Island Lighthouse the Rescue Of Tammy Burnham, and is written in the same exact style as all of Alley's previous public statements.
Margo Alley

Bangor, ME

#11 Mar 23, 2010
Lily Burnham wrote her own material and sent her statement to me with a request to post it to this site.
Margo Alley

Bangor, ME

#13 Mar 24, 2010
As I have stated before, my book, Wood Island Lighthouse The Rescue of Tammy Burnham by Margo Alley was written from expert first hand eyewitness accounts of the people that were directly involved in rescuing Tammy.
Need I remind you,Ms. Kennedy that your father former chief John Kennedy was not the one that spent approximately 75 minutes in the freezing water fighting to hold onto Tammy Burnham and fighting to save her life, Edward Syvinski did that. In fact, your father John Kennedy and his engineman were snug on the 30 footer and in no danger of drowning or dying as Seaman Edward Syvinski was, Seaman Raymond Bill was and as Tammy’s own father Laurier Burnham was¾not to mention what could have happened to my grandfather because your father led his men poorly the night of November 29, 1960. Unworthy tiny wooden skiff and no life jackets just to mention a few details.
You were not there Ms. Kennedy unless you were hiding on the 30-footer taking notes for your investigation? For you to insinuate that you know more about this rescue than Mrs. Burnham does is in my opinion, nothing short of ignorant. Mrs. Burnham, a married adult and mother of Tammy was there, no matter how much you want to think she wasn’t. How old were you, four or five possibly? A loving and caring mother would never forget the facts of such a horrific night when her own dear child was left for dead in Wood Island Harbor.
Your fruitless “investigation” is of absolutely no threat to me at all. As a matter of fact, that statement in itself would be hilarious if it weren’t so truly sad. I reviewed the interview from your father and the engineman of their version of the rescue long before I wrote my book but unfortunately in my opinion it was just not believable and I do not write of things I feel are not totally one hundred percent honest.
Tammy Burnham’s rescue is a part of history that is well documented and my “self published book” as you are so fond of calling it, has been and continues to be distributed all around the world as do many other items related to Tammy’s rescue. In fact, you have boosted my sales with your antics and attempts to clear your father’s name. Not to mention, you have purchased three copies of my “self published” book yourself! Unfortunately you don’t appear to understand much about the self-publishing world, but you might do an Internet search and educate yourself about it. The standards an author follows are the same as with any other publishing company.
My book isn’t going away and no one has anything to apologize for and in my humble opinion, you are wasting your time with this. It is what it is, the facts have been proven and it’s recorded and documented HISTORY, I really don’t know how to be any clearer other than suggesting you probably should find a way to deal with it. This book will not be the only one that I write having reference to the rescue of Tammy Burnham. And who knows, maybe Lily Burnham will write one also.
I would advise you to take all of your facts and self appointed investigation results and present that to the United States Coast Guard, as they are the only one with the power to help you. But of course and you and you’re father have already done that numerous times all to no avail. So it appears no one is listening to you though I think possibly on line some people may find this entertaining at times.
Unfortunately, you appear in my opinion to NEED an audience and as of now, as far as I’m concerned, you no longer have one. Do have a wonderful day.
Maurene Kennedy

United States

#14 Mar 25, 2010
Readers should note that the last, same exact post by Margo Alley was published very recently by Lily Burnham at: . When reading about history, it is important to evaluate, and be able to find trustworthy, the source of information being read. John F. Kennedy OIC USCG Fletcher’s Neck Life Saving station, never gave up anyone for dead. No one was in the water for 75 minutes. The water was not at freezing temperatures. Margo Alley’s grandfather Preston Alley, was not involved in the rescue. Chief Kennedy had many years of experience at sea,(serving in the Navy prior to serving in the USCG), including experiencing three tsunamis in the Pacific. Long before Kennedy took command in Biddeford, ME, he was decorated for his bravery and leadership. Chief Kennedy did relay a message from the 30 ft lifeboat through Fletcher’s Neck, to Laurier Burnham on Wood Island. The message did not state,“We will look for the bodies in the morning”, Kennedy had already located Tammy and Syvinski with the searchlight on the 30 ft lifeboat. Lily Burnham could not have been a first hand, eyewitness to the events of the rescue, she was recovering from back surgery and could not stand or walk, and most likely was heavily medicated. Kennedy had relayed to Laurier Burnham his order for Burnham to launch the peapod and pick up Tammy and Syvinski on Negro Island. Laurier Burnham launched the peapod, met the 30 ft lifeboat, Kennedy showed him with the searchlight where Tammy and Syvinski were on Negro Island, saying,“There’s your girl, now go and get her.” Lifejackets were provided to the Seamen as standard procedure on board the lifeboat #30414. The Kennedy family is committed to making the facts available to the public. A fabrication has been marketed to the public, by individuals, and the organizations they are, or have been affiliated with. They hold up Lt. Kristopher Furtney’s 1992 investigation,(begun decades after the actual rescue, November 29, 1960, at the behest of the Burnham’s, seeking recognition and medals for family and friends, after reading about the restoration plans for Wood Island Light), as proof of their claims. Furtney’s report, by his own admission, was flawed. We are not seeking medals for the veterans who rescued Tammy, we are not selling books or asking for grants to save a lighthouse. We seek a reflection of the facts in the USCG record of the rescue, including the first hand, expert eyewitness testimony of John F. Kennedy BMC USCG Retired and Kenneth Realue EN3 USCG Retired, the men who, with USCG Seamen Raymond Bill and Edward Syvinski, saved that little girl’s life. Alley makes many assumptions, then she makes statements based on those assumptions as if the assumptions were fact. Alley can’t possibly know what my father and I are doing regarding our contact with the USCG. Documentation and supporting material from primary sources may be viewed at:
Wood Island Lighthouse The USCG Rescue Of Tammy Burnham
Margo Alley

Bangor, ME

#15 Apr 12, 2010
The USCG has responded to demands to reopen the 1992 investigation of Tammy Burnham’s rescue from the waters of Wood Island Harbor on November 29, 1960.
After thorough considerations the USCG has determined that the investigation Lt. Kristopher Furtney conducted in 1992 was sufficient and reinvestigating the rescue would serve no benefit to the public.

Since: Jun 10

Bangor, ME

#16 Jun 1, 2010
I read

Since: Jun 10

Bangor, ME

#17 Jun 1, 2010
I read the book of the little girls rescue and I looked at the web site that disputes it. The web site is way out there obviously home made by a person that is fixated. The kids mother is very reliable and when you read the book you can easily follow the cover up that the superior officer was involved with. The book's a solid thumbs up.
Margo Alley

Bangor, ME

#18 Aug 27, 2011
Rogue Wave is the second book released by Biddeford Pool's own historian and author, Margo Alley, covering the rescue of Tammy Burnham in 1960. Alley commented, "Never before has the rescuer told his riveting account of the rescue publicly; in this book he author's his own chapter."

"After decades of harboring haunting memories and troubling revelations, I now feel compelled to speak out. This decision has not been made lightly. It is not my intent to denigrate or disparage anyone in this process, especially not the United States Coast Guard, which I honor and respect. I have no intended agenda beyond sharing the truth of my experience. In the interest of truth, every effort has been made to limit and define the context of what I actually witnessed while simultaneously providing insights never before shared with the public." Rescuer Edward Syvinski.
To reserve your copy today go to:
Maurene Kennedy

United States

#19 Mar 5, 2012
Margo Alley's post of April 12, 2010 is misleading and inaccurate. According to Margo Alley, at her behest, Senator Susan Collins office, assisted her by letter of inquiry to the USCG of the status of a reinvestigation. Alley claims she was informed on March 23, 2010, by Senator Collins staff assistant, Helena R. Ackerson that,“the USCG had concluded that further research into the 50 year old case would serve no benefit to the public interest”.
The alleged letter to Margo Alley from Senator Susan Collins office was supposed to have been posted to Flickr, a link was posted on her web site, which can easily be found by doing a Google search of her name. The material has recently been removed but she references it on other sites: , , where one can peruse Alley’s style of communication (see False Public Statements). There is no documentation from the USCG that states, "After thorough considerations the USCG has determined that the investigation Lt. Kristopher Furtney conducted in 1992 was sufficient." 
The connection between Senator Susan Collins (who has an office in Biddeford, ME), Friends of Wood Island Lighthouse, the American Lighthouse Foundation, and Margo Alley is well documented. The American Lighthouse Foundation has the interest and support of Senator Collins and her office. The Senator is committed to working with ALF and supported them in obtaining the necessary Congressional support for the organization’s Federal appropriation request.

Tell me when this thread is updated:

Subscribe Now Add to my Tracker

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

Boothbay Harbor Discussions

Title Updated Last By Comments
...... Traffic in Boothbay region ??? are ... (May '12) Oct '17 Jeez 2
News The Other Plymouth Colony, Pemaquid, Maine (Nov '14) Nov '14 Ace McMillan 2
News Residents of Boothbay Harbor, Maine, try to war... (Aug '13) Aug '13 i_c_you 1
~~~~ you been Robbed ~~~ (Dec '12) Dec '12 i_c_you 1
News September 27, 1987: Pollution closes in on Cape... (Sep '12) Sep '12 SpaceBlues 1
Baoothbay Harbor - The Village of idiots . (Jun '12) Jun '12 i_c_you 1
News Maine governor recognizes Windjammer Days Festival (Jun '12) Jun '12 i_c_you 1

Boothbay Harbor Jobs

Personal Finance

Boothbay Harbor Mortgages