The Coast Guard Cutter Diligence and crew returned to Wilmington Saturday, after 63 days in the North Atlantic providing living marine resources enforcement, participation in the Fleet Week celebration in New York City, helping a mariner in distress and a three-week training and evaluation period.
On June 6th, the crew assisted a distressed mariner attempting to row solo across the Atlantic from Norfolk, Virginia, to Scotland in a 24-foot rowboat. The boat and rudder suffered damage following a storm and rough seas, leaving it unable to navigate and adrift 150 nautical miles southeast of Nantucket, Mass. Diligence crewmembers repaired the rudder and enabled the mariner to continue on his three-month voyage.
“It’s a life goal for him to complete this trans-Atlantic row, and I know he was devastated when his rudder broke and he thought he wouldn’t be able to complete it,” said Petty Officer David Slingerland. “I’m glad we were able to repair the boat so he could carry on safely.”
Diligence also participated in New York City’s Fleet Week 2018, including the Parade of Ships. Over a five-day period, the crew provided 2,413 public tours and attended 41 public relations, humanitarian, and military events.
“Fleet Week was truly a once in a lifetime experience,” said Petty Officer Seth Davis. “New York City opened its arms to welcome the sailors that protect the nation.”
Diligence and her crew shifted roles from training and public relations after Fleet Week to enforcement of offshore fishery regulations and search and rescue response. Diligence patrolled in the North Atlantic from the Gulf of Maine to Long Island, New York, inspecting catch size and gear requirements onboard commercial fishing vessels. The Coast Guard’s role in this mission is to preserve the seafood stock for future generations and to protect safety of life at sea.
Diligence began her patrol in Little Creek, Virginia, where the crew took part in the bi-annual training period called Tailored Ship’s Training Availability. Diligence conducted 108 drills and exercises achieving an outstanding 97.4 percent average drill score. The training focused on evaluating the crew’s ability to repair shipboard casualties, respond to medical emergencies, and proficiency in navigation and seamanship.
Coast Guard Cutter Diligence is a 210-foot medium endurance cutter homeported in Wilmington. Diligence’s primary missions consist of counter drug and migrant interdiction, enforcing federal fishery laws, and search and rescue operations.