Coast Guard Barque Eagle Announces 2009 Schedule

NEW LONDON, Conn. – Destinations for the Coast Guard Barque Eagle’s 2009 summer cruise have been determined.

The crew of the Eagle will depart for Rota, Spain, from New London April 20, 2009, and begin a training cruise that will include Europe, Bermuda, and the Atlantic Coast of North America, including Canada.

The Eagle will make the following stops during the trip:

May 8-11 Rota, Spain
May 22-25 Monaco
June 11-15 Bermuda
June 26-29 Charleston, South Carolina
July 8-13 Boston, Massachusetts
July 17-20 Halifax, Nova Scotia
July 24-27 Rockland, Maine
July 31-Aug 3 Portland, Maine
Aug 7-10 Portsmouth, New Hampshire

The Eagle’s crew spends each summer training hundreds of Coast Guard Academy cadets, and even has Naval Academy midshipmen aboard occasionally. The Eagle also conducts training cruises for officer candidates. Officer candidates are individuals seeking an commission through the Coast Guard’s 17-week Officer Candidate School commissioning program after completing civilian college or a combination of enlisted service and college education. The Eagle has served as a floating classroom to future Coast Guard officers since 1946 offering fundamental leadership, teamwork and seamanship skills.

The Eagle is operated and maintained by a permanent crew of 49 Coast Guard enlisted personnel and six officers. They are augmented each summer by additional active duty members, as well as Reserve and Coast Guard Auxiliary crewmembers. This professional crew guides the cadets through a rigorous underway and in-port training schedule that is dedicated towards learning the skills of navigation, damage control, first aid, engineering, and deck seamanship.

The 19 senior (or first class) cadets, who are known as cadre, are responsible for the organization, oversight and direction of third class cadets as well as working hand-in-hand with the senior enlisted members onboard. These cadre duties mirror those of a Junior Officer serving in the Coast Guard fleet. The Eagle provides an excellent leadership development opportunity, as the cadre manage their own cadet divisions, direct shipboard operations and juggle numerous collateral duties. This prepares them to assume their duties when reporting aboard their first unit after graduation.

The Eagle’s Active Duty, Reserve and Auxiliary crewmembers are trained Coast Guard instructors. This is critical because the Eagle’s primary mission is training future Coast Guard officers. All crewmembers from the least-experienced seaman to the highest-ranking officer meet numerous break-in and qualification standards when they report aboard. This is to ensure they can meet the demands of the training environment aboard the Eagle while providing a safe and beneficial developmental program to more than 600 future officers per year.

Built in the early 20th Century in the twilight era of sailing, EAGLE has a rich and diverse history. The name “Eagle” has resonated throughout Coast Guard history and has been the title of seven separate cutters since the Coast Guard’s inception in 1790.

The present day Eagle was originally named Horst Wessel and was a training ship for the German navy prior to World War II. In 1946, following WWII, the Horst Wessel was taken as a war prize by the United States and is the seventh ship named Eagle in Coast Guard history.

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