Coast Guard Heroes

“There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty that makes human nature rise above itself, in acts of bravery and heroism.” –Alexander Hamilton

The Coast Guard’s history shines with such acts of bravery that the “father” of the Coast Guard Alexander Hamilton speaks of and these acts will forever be remembered as the Coast Guard’s new Sentinel-class cutters take the namesake of Coast Guard heroes and their valiant deeds.

These acts performed by men and women in the course of their everyday duties displayed devotion to duty and responsibility to the citizens of the nation for which they served. For some, their life-saving actions and heroic efforts resulted in the ultimate sacrifice of their life.

From the 19-year old, just one year out of boot camp, who remained aboard his sinking vessel so his crew could escape, to the lighthouse keeper who rowed two hours in a squall as she searched for a naval aviator whose plane went down, these heroes evinced astounding, and enormously humbling acts of bravery.

For many of these heroes, their powerful stories have long gone untold. But, with the arrival of the new Fast Response Cutter (FRC), their names and legends will enter the collective conscious of our service as all 58 planned FRCs will be named for the service’s heroes. We are proud to unveil the names of the first 14 FRCs here on Compass.

Engineman First Class Robert J. Yered

Engineman First Class Robert J. Yered is one of the Coast Guard heroes that the new Fast Response Cutters will be named for. Yered distinguished himself and was awarded the Silver Star due to his exceptionally valorous actions at the Army Terminal in Cat Lai, Vietnam in 1968. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Bernard C. Webber
Richard Etheridge
William Flores
Robert Yered
Margaret Norvell
Paul Clark
Charles David
Charles Sexton
Kathleen Moore
Joseph Napier
William Trump
Isaac Mayo
Richard Dixon
Heriberto Hernandez

As individuals these valiant men and women earned a Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Gold Lifesaving Medal, Silver Star, Navy Cross and Marine Corps Medal. These medals represent their personal bravery and sacrifice, but their legacy and the service’s legacy will carry on in the form of the Coast Guard’s newest patrol boats. Their names will continue to stand for freedom and the country for which they so loved.

“There is no better embodiment of the Commandant’s vision of the Coast Guard being defined by its missions, people and heritage than the naming of the new FRC’s after Coast Guard heroes,” said Master Chief Michael P. Leavitt, Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard. “We honor these heroes who have given so much and inspire future Coast Guard men and women.”

The Compass will be running a series of posts about the first 14 heroes the Sentinel-class Fast Response Boats have been named for. You can read the first, Bernard C. Webber’s here.



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8 Responses

  1. Chuck McCall says:

    God speed to these vessels and to all whom sail in them.
    Chuck McCall
    FC 091-18-11

  2. DDavis says:

    I am so glad to be a Coastie Wife. I thank all of the Coasties that have given of themselves to do a job no one wants. I hope all are well and all return home safely.

  3. Jim Wilson says:

    It’s now time to choose names of our heroes rather than political selections.

  4. Pat Daniels says:

    What a great way to honor those who went above and beyond the call. BZ!

  5. Christopher Wood says:

    A fitting tribute to the best of our nations life savers. In war and in peace the men and women of the United States Coast Guard stand Always Ready to respond to any challange and will continue to maintain the highest standards of the militery service. On behalf of the USCGC Chase Association we welcome the new Fast Response Cutters to the fleet to honor their namesakes and wish their crews fair winds and following seas.

  6. Mike Jendrossek says:

    Fletcher Brown (WWI Seneca) & Frank Newcomb (Spanish American War Hudson) would be nice adds; Fletcher Brown was awarded a Navy Cross and Frank Newcomb was awarded a Special Gold Medal of Honor as recommended by President McKinely.

  7. Joseph Geerholt says:

    I have been to the CGC Blackthorn memorial site in St. Petersburg, FL and it is very emotional to know that right down the street from where i grew up something that tragic happened. All though I was not a guardian at that time or alive it is still an emotional event to visit such a place.

    FN Geerholt

  8. James Pisano says:

    As a former “hooligan” and radio operator aboard the 165 foot USS Nike during World War II, welcome to the new class patrol boat.  It will carry on a proud tradition