USLSSHA tours Long Island Life-Saving Stations during annual meeting

Northeast Atlantic Coast Guard NewsNEW YORK – The U.S. Life-Saving Service Heritage Association held its 16th annual conference on Long Island, N.Y. this week.

Some highlights of the trip included touring a former life-saving station from the early 1900’s, which is now a private residence, tours of the former Camp Hero Montauk Air Force Station, Montauk, N.Y, several area lighthouses and visits to the current operating Coast Guard Stations Shinnecock, Fire Island and Montauk. Here the USLSSHA met with unit members, toured the station building and grounds and were able to observe the newer boat platforms, which the Coast Guard conducts search and rescue operations with.

“It’s important that we continue to honor the traditions and rich historical contributions from the early days of the U.S. Life-Saving Service and U.S Coast Guard,” said Chief Warrant Officer Timothy Woody, commanding officer of Coast Guard Station Fire Island. “We must never forget Richard Etheridge, Ida Lewis, Sumner Kimble, and all others that came before us, the selfless sacrifices they’ve made, which continues to pave the way for the men and women of today’s Coast Guard.”

The USLSSHA, which was formed in 1995, is comprised of former military members, authors, historians and family members of former USLSS crews. These members share a passion for the preservation of the Coast Guard’s historic Life-Saving Service stations and tradition.

For the first time since the association was formed, they visited some of the historic and current sites of life-saving stations along the Long Island coast to educate current Coast Guard members of the importance of their unit’s history.

During the mid-18th century more than 20 life-saving stations were built along Long Island’s shore due to the increase of merchant sailing shipwrecks. The ships, bound for the port of New York oftentimes wrecked near shore due to weather or navigation and their crews had no way of being rescued.

Today there are five year-round active Coast Guard stations throughout Long Island.

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