Coast Guard Cutter Vigorous returns home after 53-day patrol

CAPE MAY, N.J. – The Coast Guard Cutter Vigorous is scheduled to return Wednesday to its homeport of Cape May at 9:30 a.m. following a 53-day patrol in the Caribbean Sea.

The crew of the Vigorous deployed to the Windward Pass off the north coast of Haiti in June to provide humanitarian assistance and maritime security to the Haitian government. The crew of the cutter was designated the commander of a task unit composed of three other Coast Guard cutters during its deployment. More than 600 Haitian migrants were interdicted at sea aboard grossly overloaded and unseaworthy vessels during this period. The migrants were repatriated to Haiti in accordance with a bilateral agreement between the governments of Haiti and the United States.

“The preservation of life and property upon the high seas is a number one priority for the Coast Guard,” said Capt. Brendan C. McPherson, commanding officer of the Vigorous.

During their deployment, the crew of the Vigorous also deployed to Mayaguez, Puerto Rico to provide waterborne security for the 21st Central American and Caribbean Games. The highly publicized games were attended by nearly all Caribbean nations as well as numerous countries from South and Central America. Nearly 5,000 athletes from 31 nations participated in 39 sports. The cutter and its crew was assigned as the patrol commander responsible for maintaining a maritime security zone surrounding the stadium and sports complex with assistance from local Coast Guard units as well as other federal and local law enforcement agencies.

“I’m very proud of the hard work my crew did throughout this patrol to secure our borders and protect our maritime interests in the region,” said McPherson. “It was a unique and challenging deployment.”

As a multi-mission, 210-foot medium-endurance cutter, the crew of Vigorous conducts a wide range of Coast Guard missions, including search and rescue, maritime law enforcement, homeland and coastal security, and environmental and natural resources protection. They are expected to leave on its next deployment in several weeks after a short maintenance and repair period.

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