Cutter Boutwell returns home after circumnavigating the globe during six-month patrol

ALAMEDA, Calif. – The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Boutwell returned to its home port here on Coast Guard Island Wednesday, following a six-month deployment circumnavigating the globe.

During the patrol, the crew conducted joint operations with the USS Boxer Expeditionary Strike Group, in support of U.S. Central Command, participating in anti-piracy operations and training of foreign navies.

The crew helped to reopen diplomatic relations with Libya as the first U.S. naval ship to visit the country in more than 40 years. Boutwell’s crew also found and rescued 22 people who were adrift in the Gulf of Oman for more than three days without food or water. The government of Iran praised the crew for their actions.

During its deployment Boutwell also participated in six theatre security operations events including Pakistan’s multi-national naval peace exercise AMAN ’09. They also responded to a distress call from the motor-vessel Skaftafell resulting in the interdiction and deterrence of seven suspected pirates and ensuring the safety of the Skaftafell’s crew and cargo.

The crew also volunteered for humanitarian-aid projects including a wetlands rehabilitation project in Malaysia and the refurbishment of a retirement home in India.

Boutwell is a 378-foot cutter with a crew of 179. Its missions include search and rescue, law enforcement, maritime security, and national defense.

Boutwell’s crew earned a Unit Commendation Award which is the highest peacetime award that can be given to a Coast Guard unit. The award is presented to the members of a Coast Guard unit that distinguishes itself by valorous or extremely meritorious service, not involving combat, but in support of Coast Guard operations.

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