Coast Guard Foundation New York City Dinner to Honor Coast Guard Heroics
Coast Guard Cutter Stratton and Station Los Angeles-Long Beach Crews to be Recognized at National Event
The Coast Guard Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to the education and welfare of all Coast Guard members and their families, announced today that at the upcoming 35th Annual Salute to the U.S. Coast Guard in New York City, taking place on October 8th, the crew of the Cutter Stratton and Station Los Angeles-Long Beach CG 29123 boat crew will receive special recognition. Representing the Stratton crew will be CAPT Nathan Moore, BM1 Alanna Impastato, IT2 Robert Benavides and OS2 Christopher Cutchins. Attending on behalf of the Los Angeles-Long Beach crew will be BM3 Mark Faustino, BM3 Felix Gentry and Mr. Phillip Gilbert.
On August 10, 2015, the USCG Cutter Stratton arrived in San Diego, California from its three-month, April to August, Eastern Pacific Ocean mission with the largest drug offload in U.S. history. While the crew unloaded the contraband, Commandant of the Coast Guard Adm. Paul Zukunft, who was in attendance, announced that during the previous 10 months, the Coast Guard seized more cocaine in the Eastern Pacific Ocean than the two previous years combined. During their patrol, the Stratton interdicted eight vessels and disrupted another seven to halt these illegal drugs bound for the United States. In total, the Stratton captured more than 35,000 pounds of cocaine with a wholesale value of over $540 million and with the assistance of other Pacific area units, the total amount of drugs seized during that period had a street value of over $1 billion.
Also honored at the event is Station Los Angeles-Long Beach boat crew CG 29123 for its actions on the evening of September 9, 2014 after the Sector received a report of a mariner lost at sea. The mariner, from the commercial fishing vessel Clarion, lost his balance and fell into the water. Station Los Angeles-Long Beach quickly launched a 45-foot response boat to begin the search. Shortly after getting underway, one of the vessel’s engines was disabled and the crew was forced to return to the station. Without hesitation, they readied a 29-foot response boat and continued the search.
Despite a higher level of risk to the crew by using the smaller boat, they set out in six-foot seas to conduct a nighttime rescue mission in the 75 square nautical mile search area, nearly 10 miles offshore. After two hours of intense searching, the crew reduced their speed to conserve fuel. Shortly after midnight – and against all odds – the crew heard yelling and a faint whistle in the darkness. The crew discovered the fisherman alive but severely fatigued from treading water for over seven hours without a life preserver. Quickly pulling the man on to the deck, assessing his vitals and performing first aid, the crew provided the mariner their personal jackets to help with hypothermia and transported him to the care of paramedics and his family waiting on shore.
“The heroic actions of these two units are the perfect display of the exemplary professionalism and versatility of the brave men and women of the Coast Guard,” said Anne Brengle, president, Coast Guard Foundation. “In rescue and law enforcement efforts, as well as environmental and marine compliance capacities, these individuals are working tirelessly and at great personal risk to keep us safe. This recognition pales in comparison to the thanks they truly deserve.”
The Coast Guard Foundation’s 35th Annual Salute to the U.S. Coast Guard in New York City will take place on Thursday, October 8, 2015 at the Times Square Marriott Marquis in New York City. A cocktail reception will begin at 6:30 p.m., dinner and the program will follow at 7:30 p.m. For more information on this year’s tribute to the United States Coast Guard, please visit www.coastguardfoundation.org/events. To learn more about the Coast Guard Foundation, or to help support its work, please visit www.coastguardfoundation.org or call (860) 535-0786.
The Coast Guard Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the education, welfare and morale of all Coast Guard members and their families
New York Awards Dinner
Cocktail reception 6:30 p.m., Dinner and Program 7:30 p.m. —Thursday, October 8, 2015
Times Square Marriot Marquis, 1535 Broadway at 45th St, New York, NY
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