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Recap: 2019 Tribute in Florida

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by Jennifer Crowley Fyke
April 22, 2019

The Coast Guard Foundation hosted the 25th Tribute to the Coast Guard Seventh District on April 18 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. The event was originally scheduled for late January but was postponed because of the partial government shutdown.

The rescheduled date did nothing to dampen spirits- in fact, this year’s event was one of the most successful in years -- with more than 400 people in the crowded ballroom at the Pier 66 Hotel & Marina.

Upwards of $380,000 was raised at the event to support Coast Guard Foundation programs and initiatives that provide education, morale and relief support for Coast Guard members and families throughout Florida, Puerto Rico and the rest of the country.

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The Coast Guard Foundation presented special honors to Thomas B. Crowley, Jr. and Crowley Maritime Corporation for their more than 30 years of support to the Coast Guard Foundation.

In presenting the award to Crowley, Will Jenkins, Coast Guard Foundation Board Chairman remarked, “In addition to supporting tribute events, they have supported our scholarship program, fallen heroes fund and morale programs all across the country. All of this, and so much more, make Tom and the Crowley Maritime organization more than deserving of our recognition.”

Tom Crowley expressed his appreciation for the award, and shared, “I encourage everyone to support the Foundation’s efforts; they are unsung heroes and we need to be there for them.”

Rescue Coordination Center Miami and an aircrew from Air Station Clearwater were recognized for their work to rescue 28 fishermen who were forced to abandon their 131-foot commercial fishing vessel became fully engulfed in a destructive onboard fire.

Keynote remarks were delivered by United States Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Karl Schultz.

“I want to add my personal gratitude to the Coast Guard Foundation. Fifty years in service, and clearly impactful to this seventh district team,” shared Schultz.

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Event Highlights Include:

  • Full album of photos can be viewed online here.

  • Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney (New York), chairman of the Coast Guard Maritime Transportation subcommittee, attended the event and shared remarks, emphasizing his appreciation for the men and women who serve in the Coast Guard.
  • Carnival Corporation & Carnival Foundation generously sponsored the cocktail reception that preceded the event. Hosted outside on the patio among the palm trees, the reception was a wonderful kick-off to the evening’s celebration.
  • Crowley Maritime Corporation sponsorship of the dessert reception at the end of the evening was a great way to "put a bow" on the night that recognized Coast Guard members and their families.
  • American Maritime Officers was our top Shield of Freedom sponsor, providing a high level of support to the event.
  • Mr. JJ Raterink, former arena football quarterback, served as the master of ceremonies for the event.
  • Rear Admiral Peter Brown, Commander of the Coast Guard’s 7th District offered opening remarks and shared that Captain Robert Grant, USCG (Ret.) was presented the Coast Guard Distinguished Public Service Award in a pre-event ceremony for his dedication to the commissioning of the Coast Guard’s new Fast Response Cutter fleet.
  • The United States Coast Guard Band’s Brass Quintet provided ceremonial music and the Coast Guard Base Miami Color Guard served as the honor guard.
  • The Tribute to the Coast Guard 7th District Dinner Committee was chaired by Coast Guard Foundation trustee Alexandra Anagnostis-Irons and a group of dedicated volunteers from South Florida. Each committee member lends a great deal of time and talent to execute this signature Coast Guard Foundation event.