Welding mishap destroys historic Boblo Island boat, S.S. Ste Claire

DETROIT - One of the old, historic boats from Boblo Island caught fire Friday afternoon at Detroit's Riverside Marina.

RELATED: DFD believe welding mishap started Boblo Island boat, S.S. Ste Claire, fire

"This is a Detroit icon," said Ron Kattoo, the boat's owner. "We're hoping to bring her back."

Detroit arson detectives said the fire was caused by a welding mishap. 

Kattoo and his family watched his dreams of restoring the historic boat go up in flames. Kattoo and Saqib Nakadar had big plans and had been putting money into the boat.

"It's a sad day for everyone," Nakadar said. "Not just us."

In the past two years, new decks were installed and there were plans for tours to start in the next few months. A haunted house and a restaurant were also planned as part of the boat's restoration.

"Even though we own the boat, it means too much to people." Kattoo said. "We get calls all the time with emotional stories. It is hard to see her like this right now."

Also see: Aerials: Boblo boat catches fire on Detroit River

The S.S. Ste Claire was moved to Riverside Marina last year. In 2016, a collector bought the old ship

Boblo Island closed in 1993.

Read more about Boblo Island here.

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