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Coast Guard Cutter John McCormick to be Recognized for Mission Excellence in Alaska

August 13, 2018

The Coast Guard Foundation will honor the men and women who serve on the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter John McCormick for outstanding service to the 17th District and our nation at the 2018 Alaska Awards Dinner on August 14.

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter John McCormick and her crew are being honored for their tireless commitment to serve and safeguard the public, protect the environment and defend the Nation’s interest in the Alaska Maritime Region. Throughout 2017, the crew of the John McCormick had an excellent record of accomplishment that promoted the wellbeing of Alaska’s coastline and people.

The cutter and crew heightened vessel safety standards throughout the Southeast Alaska Area of Responsibility and executed seven search and rescue operations. During two of these operations, the deployed rescue and assistance crewmembers entered civilian vessels without hesitation, worked quickly to combat the progressive flooding of frigid waters and critically repaired the damaged vessels. Additionally, two disabled-vessel tows and extended person-in-the-water searches helped save 12 lives and over $1.2 million in property.

Of importance to the crew of the John McCormick is serving its surrounding communities. The cutter visited 10 ports throughout Southeast Alaska to engage with its towns and Alaska Native villages, and offered cutter tours to over 1,800 citizens. The crew partnered with the Ketchikan Youth Initiative to provide healthy outlets for underprivileged youth by remodeling the Ketchikan Dance Theater Studio and constructing a paintball facility. A toy and canned food drive for the Organized Village of Kake raised over $2,000 worth of toys and food for the remote village.


“The demonstrated care and commitment which the crew of the John McCormick has brought to each of its missions throughout the past year has been unparalleled,” said Susan Ludwig, president, Coast Guard Foundation. “District 17 has gained much from the crew’s dedication to their work, whether that’s saving a life on the water or connecting with the local community. They embody what it means to defend, protect and serve others in the most difficult conditions and circumstances.”

In addition, Walter J. Hickel, Jr., CEO and chairman of Hickel Investment Company and the Hotel Captain Cook, will be celebrated for his dedication to the Board of the Trustees of the Coast Guard Foundation and for growing the Alaska Awards Dinner into such a successful event. Wally has donated his time and energy since 1998 into securing key supporters and making his hotel property available for this biennial event. Further, his support of Foundation initiatives that benefit Coast Guard members and their families highlights Wally’s commitment to the cause, and how deserving he is of this praise.

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