The Coast Guard Cutter Jarvis sailed our seas for decades, but its service is now over. The ship was honored today for its 40 year career.
The Jarvis sailed the Pacific and served our country since 1972 when it became the first Coast Guard ship ever commissioned in Hawaii. It has saved lives, taken drugs off the water, and protected our fishery resources.
Commanding officer of Jarvis, Captain Richard Mourey said, "As the crew is on the pier that's actually where the crews ships spirit is. That's the only thing that makes me hardened this day, is that we are going to take that spirit with us."
Mourey said the 378-foot vessel has protected the crew and taken care of them while at sea. But today's ceremony for Jarvis almost didn't happen. Back in 1972, on one of the ship's first voyages, it ran into trouble.
"Only 50 miles into the transit the pumps were overcome and water started to rise in the engine room, and actually came up to 15 feet in depth. And at that point the ship lost complete power and propulsion," said Mourey.
But the Jarvis was saved, and now the time has come to let it rest. As ships get older it costs more to maintain them. The Jarvis is the fourth 378-foot cutter to be retired. The ships are being removed to make way for new national security cutters.
The eight new vessels will be larger and more technologically advanced.
Vice Admiral Paul Zukunft of the Pacific Area said, "These ships not only are they more stable, more capable of launching boats and helicopters, but are also much more friendly to the environment as well."
Officers say the new vessels will not arrive for a couple more years. The cutter Morgenthau will take the Jarvis' place until the national security vessels arrive.