Updated: 03/26/2018 01:44 PM | First Published: 02/02/2018 01:13 PM

Tribute to Cornelia Marie Captain Phil Harris from Deadliest Catch


He was born as Phillip Charles Harris on December 19, 1956, in Bothell, Washington.

He started fishing with his father when he was eight, and crab fishing after high school.

He started out as an unpaid deckhand, but by quickly proving his worth, he became one of the youngest crab fishing boat captains on the Bering Sea at the age of 21.

He married an exotic dancer, Mary in 1982 and had two sons with her, Jake and Joshua before their divorce in 1991.

His sons worked as deckhands on his ship, ‘Cornelia Marie,’ which was featured in the first episode of ‘Deadliest Catch’ beside FV Maverick.

During a storm in the 2008 season of the show, Harris was thrown from his bunk and coughed up blood for several hours before seeking medical attention.

The doctors later determined that Phil had suffered a pulmonary embolism, which prevented him from fishing for a whole year.

He was always seen smoking cigarettes in the show, and that added to his health woes.

During his time off fishing, he developed a line of coffee, ‘Captain’s Reserve,’ which began national expansion in January 2011 and went global the same year.

His sons, Jake and Josh, have been promoting the brand and expanding their family business.

Though he was making occasional appearances in the fifth season, he made his official return to the show during the sixth televised King Crab season of the show. 

On January 29, 2010, while offloading crab at St. Paul Island, he suffered a massive stroke after which he was flown to Anchorage for surgery.

He was placed in an induced coma to reduce intracranial pressure and swelling; everything seemed okay when he awoke from his coma after his condition improved.

According to his doctor, he was able to talk, squeeze hands, within days, which would have taken months for normal stroke patients.

However, Phil Harris passed away from intracranial hemorrhage on February 9, 2010.

Captain Phillip Charles Harris was cremated, and half of his ashes were buried in an ornately painted Harley Davidson motorcycle gas tank with the remains of his mother.

Owned a Harley-Davidson and a Chevy Corvette.

The remainder of his ashes was spread at sea by his family.

Phil was always seen building Bird Feeders and Birdhouses when he wasn’t fishing or filming for the show.

A memorial service to Phil Harris was hosted by Discovery Channel along Seattle’s waterfront on Smith Cove Cruise Terminal at Pier 91 on April 30, 2010.

Rest In Peace! Captain Phillip Harris