Dylan Eder

Location of Interview
Collection Name

Graying of the Fleet


These oral histories examine the graying phenomenon and implications for the resilience of the commercial fishing industry in two coastal communities in Oregon.

Date of Interview
Biographical Sketch

“One of the same things that makes fishing a great adventure – the wildness and unpredictability of the ocean – can also be a huge source of discomfort.”

Dylan Eder lives in Newport, Oregon, and started fishing around 8 or 9 years old with his father and his brother in the family business. Dylan got his college degree, but a few years after floating around working part-time gigs, he realized that fishing was his passion and he belonged back home. Dylan’s partner has her master’s degree, and remains uninvolved in his fishing career. They have one child together. His mother, Michele Longo Eder, wrote a memoir about being a fishermen’s wife, titled “Salt in our Blood.”

Dylan has experience fishing for Dungeness Crab, Black Cod, Halibut, and Shrimp. He discusses the differences in fishing for different stocks, and the experience in each season. The ocean and stocks don’t seem much different to him, but the rules and regulations are where he sees the most significant changes. Dylan also speaks about the troubles of the occupation, and the tragedy his family suffered when one of his father’s boats capsized in a storm and all four crew members drowned – including his brother. The family business aspect can induce great connection and respect for one another, as well as a lot of lost time in an all or nothing business. Dylan believes if young people are healthy and motivated enough, they can get into the industry. Although people are working until they are older, he does not believe the fleet is “graying” since young people are replacing the old. 

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