Harriet Ane (Johannessen) Didriksen, 76, of Mattapoisett passed away peacefully at St. Anne’s Hospital in Fall River on February 3, 2019 with her son Dana holding her hand. She was the daughter of the late Dorothy H. (Ellis) Johannessen and Johan Johannessen. Harriet started working at New Bedford ShipSupply Co., Inc. when she was just 13 years old. This is where she met a fisherman, Didrik Didriksen, the man who would later become her husband and father to their two beautiful children, Jennifer and Dana. Harriet and Didrik always wanted to own their own fishing vessel and in 1968 that dream came true. They built the 100-foot-long dragger, F/V Pioneer. They later built F/V Bagatelle and F/V Settler; F/V Settler is still operating today and can be found on the New Bedford waterfront. Harriet spent her entire life immersed in the fishing industry. After working for 40 years at New Bedford Ship Supply Co., Inc., she inherited the business when her aunt and uncle, Sarah and Rasmus Tonnessen, passed away. Dana will now own and operate New Bedford Ship Supply Co., Inc.
Harriet was held in high regard as an authority in the fishing industry. She travelled up and down the eastern seaboard, tirelessly advocating on behalf of the fishing community, small independent fishing vessels and the individual fishermen for whom she truly cared about. Harriet was a member of the New Bedford Port Society Ladies Branch and Trinity Lutheran Church. Harriet’s compassion, extraordinary generosity and kind heart were clear to all whose lives she touched.
Harriet is pre-deceased by her former husband Didrik and her daughter, Jennifer. She is survived by her son Dana, her daughter-in-law Rachel and her two beloved and “spoiled-by-her” grandchildren, Agnus and Rasmus of Bridgehampton, NY. She is also survived by her much-loved brother Sigurd Johannessen, whom she held a special place in her heart for, and sister-in-law Kelly Johannessen of Little Compton, RI, as well as her dear cousin and friend, Sarah Lawton of Mattapoisett, in addition to many other cousins and friends here and in Norway.
Harriet was as strong in sickness as she was in life. As per Harriet’s request, there will be no funeral, but we welcome you to join us for a celebration of her life at the New Bedford Whaling Museum, 18 Johnny Cake Hill, New Bedford, MA, in the Harbor View Room on Saturday, March 23, 2019 between 1:00 pm and 4:00 pm.