‘Always Ready:’ U.S. Coast Guard marks 231th birthday

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In this photo provided by the U.S. Coast Guard, Coast Guard Station Grand Isle 45-foot Response Boat-medium boat crew members attempt to throw a hammer at the hull of the SeaCor Power. The crew was attempting to make contact with potential survivors inside the vessel. . The Seacor Power, an oil industry vessel, flipped over Tuesday, April 13, 2021 in a microburst of dangerous wind and high seas. (U.S. Coast Guard via AP)

(WWTI) — The United States Coast Guard is celebrating another year of being “Always Ready.”

Every year on August 4, the USCG celebrates its birthday. It is one of the nation’s five armed forces and traces back to its found on in 1790 when it was first authorized by Congress to construct ten vessels to enforce traffic and trade laws, prevent smuggling and protect the collection of federal revenue.

U.S. Marine Corps. Commandant General David H. Berger sent out a statement in celebration early on Wednesday morning.

“For 231 years the Coast Guard has demonstrated selfless devotion to duty and unstinting courage in the face of extreme danger – whether in battle against our nation’s enemies or in the face of nature’s wrath.  Marines have the highest admiration and respect for your professional acumen and virtuous performance, and are proud to stand with you in defense of our great nation.  Happy 231st!” General Berger said in a release.

Over the years, the Coast Guard took on more responsibilities. This included more humanitarian duties such as aiding mariners in distress.

However, it was not always known as the United States Coast Guard. In 1915, the service received its present name when the Revenue Cutter Service merged with the United States Life-Saving Service to form a single service “dedicated to the safety of life at sea and enforcing the nation’s maritime laws.”

Now, in present day, the Coast Guard is a multi-mission, maritime, military service and is the smallest of the give Armed Services. It leads a mission to protect the public, environment and United States economic interests in the nation’s waterways, along the coast and on international waters. It falls under the Department of Homeland Security.

Coast Guard officers are responsible for search and rescues, drugs, immigrant trafficking and the acts of law enforcement. In total there are 40,992 full-time active-duty service members working for the Coast Guard. along with 7,000 part-time reservists, 8,577 civilians and 31,000 auxiliary Coast Guard volunteers.

Across the country, there are over 184 Coast Guard stations. This includes 12 in New York State and two nearby in the North Country in Sacket Harbor on Lake Ontario and in Alexandria Bay on the St. Lawrence River.

Happy 231st Birthday U.S. Coast Guard!

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