IAM Mourns Fallen Lobsterman Jeremy Philbrook

IMLU member Jeremy Philbrook with his infant daughter, who turned one year old the day after his untimely passing.

The IAM Maine Lobstering Union (IMLU) Local 207 mourns the loss of member Jeremy Philbrook, who died on the job last week after falling overboard and drowning, investigators believe. Philbrook, 36, was an early, key supporter of the formation of the IMLU.

The loss looms large on the tiny island of Vinalhaven, whose residents have been lobstering for generations and also within the lobstering community up and down the Maine coastline. Philbrook is remembered by those closest to him as a devoted father of three, dedicated friend and hard-working lobsterman.

“This is just a tremendous loss to the tight-knit lobstering community,” said IMLU Local 207 President Rock Alley. “This young man was a father and husband too, and unlike many traditional jobs, at the end of the day you don’t part ways with your co-workers, many of them are your neighbors and even extended family members. He’ll be missed by his union brothers and sisters as well.”

Local 207 members will float crates up and down the coast for union member captains to put lobsters in, which will then be sold. The money will be donated to Philbrook’s family.

U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud (D-ME), a candidate for governor, also offered his condolences, having met Philbrook’s wife recently.

“My thoughts go out to family and friends of Jeremy Philbrook – particularly his wife, Keeley, and their three daughters,” said Michaud. “I had the pleasure of meeting Keeley, her mother and her sister last weekend while on Vinalhaven for a meeting with local lobstermen. As a family, they have suffered a terrible loss and I hope that they take some measure of comfort in knowing that they have the support and love of their community.”

“Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Jeremy Philbrook,” said IAM District 4 Directing Business Representative Dave Sullivan. “All of us in District 4 are deeply saddened by this loss, especially our brothers and sisters in the lobstering industry, and are reminded just how dangerous all of our jobs can be on a daily basis.”

IMLU Local 207 is accepting donations to assist the family. Please make checks payable to the “Jeremy Philbrook Family Fund” and mail them to:

President Rock Alley
P.O. Box 486
Jonesport, ME 04649