Coast Guard Cutter Rollin Fritch to be commissioned at Cape May

PHILADELPHIA – The Coast Guard will hold a commissioning ceremony at Coast Guard Training Center Cape May for the Mid-Atlantic’s newest 153-foot Fast Response Cutter, the Rollin Fritch, Nov. 19, 2016.

The Commandant of the Coast Guard, Adm. Paul F. Zukunft, will preside over the ceremony, Rep. Frank LoBiondo will act as a keynote speaker, and also speaking will be Rear Adm. Meredith Austin, Commander of the 5th Coast Guard District.

The commissioning of a ship is an age-old tradition where the vessel is assigned to active service and the crew ceremoniously reports aboard to accept their positions.

The 153-foot Fast Response Cutter will perform missions such as law enforcement, search and rescue, port security, fishery patrols, drug and illegal migrant enforcement.

The Rollin Fritch crew will be homeported in Cape May and will operate off the coast from New Jersey through North Carolina.

The Rollin Fritch, the 18th Fast Response Cutter, is named after Coast Guard Seaman 1st Class Rollin A. Fritch. During a kamikaze attack off of Luzon in the Philippine Islands, Fritch manned his gun while Japanese airplanes attacked the ship. Fritch remained at his station, firing his weapon to help save his shipmates, until a kamikaze plane collided with his position, ending his life. Fritch was posthumously awarded the Silver Star for his selfless actions.

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