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Golden Ray's pilot praised during Georgia Port Authority address

During the state of the port address last week, the Georgia Port Authority executive director named the pilot of the Golden Ray when it capsized last month.

The pilot of a cargo ship that capsized is getting praised for his actions.

In September, the Golden Ray ran aground in the St. Simons ship channel.

Last week, the Brunswick News reported that the pilot was identified as captain Jonathan Tennant, a member of the Brunswick Bar Harbor Pilots Association.

The decision to ground the Golden Ray in this position at the St. Simons Sound is getting recognition from maritime experts. The sight of the ship on its side remains a spectacle to tourists.

“I like watching the ships come in and out, it’s one of my favorite things to do,” said resident Ron Edwards of Cartersville, Ga.

The sight of the capsized Golden Ray is astonishing to Edwards

“I’m pretty shocked to be honest with you,” Edwards said.

Edwards saw the ship for the first time on Monday.

Other maritime experts like attorney Rod Sullivan agree with the Georgia Port Authority's decision to praise the ship's pilot.

“It saved the port," Sullivan said. "I think he saw a bad situation developing and the best alternative was to go into shallow water, where it rolled over. It would be in an area easier to salvage it.”

Tourists like Edwards recognize that what the pilot did was not an easy task.

“You think about the amount of money that could’ve been lost if he didn’t do what he did, I consider that a heroic act,” Edwards said.

The Coast Guard and other agencies are investigating what exactly led up to the incident. Their findings have not yet been released.