Crew of Coast Guard Cutter Willow arrives in new homeport

U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Willow file photo by Petty Officer Luke Clayton.

U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Willow file photo by Petty Officer Luke Clayton.

CHARLESTON, S.C. — The crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Willow arrived Sunday at their new homeport in Charleston.

The Willow, a 225-foot Juniper-class seagoing buoy tender, is set to replace the Coast Guard Cutter Oak which departed Charleston in 2015.

“We are truly happy to welcome the Willow to Charleston,” said Cmdr. Michael Paradise, Commanding Officer of Coast Guard Base Charleston. “Charleston is a fantastic and supportive community and we hope the crew and their families enjoy all the hospitality and activities this city offers.”

“The crew has been working diligently to prepare the Willow to carry on the legacy of Coast Guard cutters stationed in Charleston,” said Lt. Cmdr. Brendan Harris, Commanding Officer of the Willow. “I would like to thank the local community for being so welcoming and supportive to our members and their families. We are honored to serve the Low Country and maintain its waterways.”

The Willow crew’s primary mission will be to service and maintain 257 aids to navigation within Coast Guard 7th District’s area of responsibility, which extends from the North Carolina-South Carolina border to the Caribbean, including Puerto Rico, Hati, and Guantanamo Bay.

In addition to aids to navigation, the crew is also responsible for additional missions such as law enforcement, marine pollution prevention and response, treaty enforcement, defense and homeland security, and search and rescue throughout the southeastern Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea.

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