Image of Coast Guard cutter Comanche, of the Greenland Patrol, shown in wartime camouflage paint scheme. Coast Guard Collection.

The Long Blue Line: An African-American Hero Serving in a Segregated Service

For many individuals it takes a lifetime to learn the skills of leadership, while others come to it naturally. African-American Charles Walter David, Jr., namesake of Fast Response Cutter David, knew instinctively how to lead others despite barriers imposed by the segregated society of mid-20th century America. David served in the United States Coast Guard early in World War II, when the military services barred African Americans from the officer ranks and limited them largely to non-senior enlisted ratings.


Charles David Jr.

Coast Guard Heroes: Charles Walter David Jr.

This Compass series chronicles the first 14 heroes the Sentinel-class Fast Response Cutters have been named for. These men and women, who stood the watch before us, lived extraordinary lives as they lit the way for sailors in times past, […]