Coast Guard Cutter Spencer returns to Portsmouth after patrol

Gunner’s mates aboard Coast Guard Cutter Spencer shoot messenger lines to a disabled fishing vessel 100 miles off the coast of New York to bring the vessel in tow. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Katharine Ingham)

Gunner’s mates aboard Coast Guard Cutter Spencer shoot messenger lines to a disabled fishing vessel 100 miles off the coast of New York to bring the vessel in tow. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Katharine Ingham)

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Spencer returned home to Portsmouth after a 33 day patrol Wednesday.

During the patrol, the crew conducted operations south of Key West, Florida, in support of efforts to deter illegal immigration and conduct safety of life at sea operations. Shifting gears halfway through the patrol, Spencer’s crew exercised their multi-mission capability in the Northeast to enforce federal commercial fishing regulations in an effort to deter over-fishing and illegal fishing. The crew also assisted in multiple search and rescue cases off the coast of New England, towing one vessel over 100 miles to safety.

Spencer also completed a routine aviation evaluation that enables the cutter to perform landings and conduct operations with a variety of military aircraft. The training exercise occurred in Miami, supported by an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater, Florida.

“Overall this was a short patrol but we accomplished a lot for the Coast Guard and for our unit,” said Cmdr. Corey Kerns, Commanding Officer of the Spencer. “This deployment included an excursion south of the Keys to support the fleet of Fast Response Cutters. Our mission then shifted to domestic fisheries, enforcing regulations that promote the longevity of this multi-billion dollar industry that our nation depends on. In between, we were able to support three search and rescue operations, conduct a lot of training, and get home before Thanksgiving.”

The Spencer is a 270-foot Medium-Endurance Cutter with a 100-person crew.

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