Navy To Salute Coast Guard For Its 225th Birthday
By Julia Bergman
August 3, 2015
New London — The Navy will pay special tribute to the Coast Guard on Tuesday in honor of its 225th birthday.
During a ceremony to begin at 1:30 p.m. at City Pier, Navy small craft will escort a Coast Guard response boat on the Thames River while the Saluting Battery from Naval Submarine Support Facility's Weapons Department fires off a 13-gun salute honoring the Coast Guard. The Saluting Battery will fire a single round volley at 5-second intervals until the 13-gun tribute is completed, according to Navy officials.
Foxwoods will be donating a "huge" cake for Tuesday's event.
Bob Ross, executive director of the state's Office of Military Affairs, wrote a letter in March to Adm. Phil Davidson, commander for the Navy's Fleet Forces Commander, asking the Navy to join in the commemoration.
"Event planners suggested that a gun salute by the Navy to the Coast Guard from a ship in the New London harbor would be a truly impressive expression," Ross' letter says in part.
Speaking by phone Sunday, Ross said he received an "immediate response of yes."
He emphasized that the "Coast Guard and Navy work together all over the world." During Ross' time in the Navy, the service worked with the Coast Guard during interdiction operations, for example. While the Navy can stop a ship, he said, Navy officials cannot arrest somebody. The Coast Guard has that jurisdiction. Drug interdiction is one of the Coast Guard's 11 missions.
Governor Dannel P. Malloy has designated this summer in Connecticut as "Coast Guard Summer," in honor of the Coast Guard's 225th birthday and the 100th year anniversary of the Coast Guard Academy at its current location in New London. The city is serving as the epicenter for the state celebration, which started in June.
In mid-July, New London became the first city in the state and the 18th in the country to be recognized as a "Coast Guard City." Cities must apply for the designation, which is bestowed at the discretion of the commandant, and must show their support of the Coast Guard over a sustained period of time.
New London is home to the academy, Coast Guard Station New London, the Coast Guard Research and Development Center, the Marine Safety Lab and the International Ice Patrol.