Coast Guard accepts, places on display historical documents

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CHARLESTON, S.C. — The Coast Guard accepted the official, historical documents Monday that renamed a portion of the Charleston Harbor in 2008 to honor a retired U.S. Coast Guard admiral.

Shutes-Folly Reach was renamed Bennis Reach Oct. 13, 2008, in honor of Rear Adm. Richard E. Bennis, Jr., and the official documents were handed over to Coast Guard Sector Charleston Commander Capt. Ric Rodriguez Monday for display and safekeeping.

“The renaming of Bennis Reach is a significant event in Coast Guard and Charleston maritime history, so we’re excited that this historic artifact may now be on display to promote Adm. Bennis’ legacy and for current and future generations to cherish and enjoy,” said Rodriguez.

U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Ric Rodriguez (right), commander of Coast Guard Sector Charleston, S.C., accepts the official, historical documents Monday, May 12, 2014, in Charleston, that renamed a portion of the Charleston Harbor in 2008 to honor a retired U.S. Coast Guard admiral. Gary Santos (left), the port manager for Inchcape Shipping Services in Charleston, presented the documents to Rodriguez. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Ric Rodriguez (right), commander of Coast Guard Sector Charleston, S.C., accepts the official, historical documents Monday, May 12, 2014, in Charleston, that renamed a portion of the Charleston Harbor in 2008 to honor a retired U.S. Coast Guard admiral. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

The documents will be on display at the Coast Guard Captain of the Port Building in Charleston and will be preserved with the Coast Guard Historian’s Office.

Gary Santos, the port manager for Inchcape Shipping Services in Charleston, led the effort to honor Bennis, alongside Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley Jr., and Mount Pleasant Mayor Harry M. Hallman Jr.

“Bennis Reach is a planning and navigation tool for vessel movement,” said Santo. “The reach is a fitting remembrance for a man who dedicated his life to the service of others and stood tall in the midst of unthinkable tragedy. He is remembered as the unsung hero of the 9/11 Lower Manhattan evacuations.”

Also present during the document-transfer ceremony Monday was John Cameron, captain of the port of Charleston when the renaming process began.

Click the photo for more from the ceremony.

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