Coast Guard holds memorial of Cutter Blackthorn collision in St. Petersburg

A Coast Guardsman salutes in front of the Coast Guard Cutter Blackthorn memorial during the ceremony for the 42nd anniversary of the ship's sinking, Jan. 28, 2022 in St. Petersburg, Florida. The cutter Blackthorn sank after colliding with the tanker Capricorn near the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, in St. Petersburg, Jan. 28, 1980. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Seaman Moriah Cannion.)

A Coast Guardsman salutes in front of the Coast Guard Cutter Blackthorn memorial during the ceremony for the 42nd anniversary of the ship’s sinking, Jan. 28, 2022 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Seaman Moriah Cannion.)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The Coast Guard held a memorial service for the Coast Guard Cutter Blackthorn collision at the Blackthorn Memorial site in St. Petersburg, Florida Friday.

The memorial marked the 42nd anniversary of the Blackthorn colliding with the tanker vessel Capricorn near the Sunshine Skyway Bridge on Jan. 28, 1980, resulting in the deaths of 23 of the 50 Blackthorn crewmembers.

The ceremony included a fly over by Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater, wreath laying, an honor platoon representing each Blackthorn victim, laying of roses, gun salute, and presiding official comments from Vice Adm. Steven Poulin, Coast Guard Atlantic Area Commander.

“It’s an honor to be able to hold this event each year in remembrance of our lost shipmates,” said Cmdr. Shawn Lansing, deputy commander of Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg. “It’s important that we pay tribute to them not only in ceremony, but in our continued efforts of properly training our Coast Guardsmen to provide the public with the best service possible on our nation’s waters.”

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