Most sailors use electronic compasses and global positioning systems to guide a boat in the right direction. Michael Bernard Griswold used the stars.
Griswold’s insatiable wanderlust led him to enlist in the Navy right out of high school. He was stationed in Alaska until 1954, then moved to Southern California to earn a computer science degree from San Diego State College.
Over the next 30 years, he married, raised a family and worked at the Department of Defense as a civil servant. In his spare time, Griswold coached the Ocean Beach Little League and volunteered as a counselor for troubled teens.
In the mid-1980s, Griswold retired and went through a divorce. With extra time on his hands, he renewed his interest in oceanic travel and studied celestial navigation. He bought the Aeolus, a 28-foot ketch named after the Greek god of winds, and sailed to Hawaii, Samoa and around the Sea of Cortez — using only the stars as his guide.
Griswold died at the end of July from emphysema. He was 70.