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Press Release | March 9, 2023

Media Advisory: USCGC Spencer to return home following African patrol

 PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The crew of USCGC Spencer (WMEC 905) is scheduled to return to their home port in Portsmouth, Friday, following an 88-day deployment in the U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa area of operations, employed by the U.S. Sixth Fleet and Combined Task Force 65, to defend U.S., allied and partner interests.

WHO: Cmdr. Corey Kerns, Spencer’s commanding officer, and Spencer’s crew

WHAT: Spencer and crew members return home after completing an 88-day African patrol

WHERE: Coast Guard Base Portsmouth, 4000 Coast Guard Blvd., Portsmouth, VA, 23703

WHEN: 10:00 a.m., Friday, March 10, 2023

Editor's Note: Media are asked to RSVP no later than 7 p.m. Thursday with Atlantic Area Public Affairs at 757-202-3448 or by emailing Interested media are requested to arrive no later than 9:30 a.m. Friday with a valid driver's license and proof of insurance in order to be processed through security.

During the patrol, Spencer’s crew worked to combat illicit transnational activities, including illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing, by conducting multinational law enforcement operations in the Atlantic Ocean. Their efforts served to strengthen existing relationships with African nations and prioritized opportunities for new partnerships.

Spencer’s crew also participated in Obangame Express 2023, a maritime exercise with participants from the U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard and 17 West African partners. Conducted by U.S. Naval Forces Africa, Obangame Express is designed to improve regional cooperation, information-sharing practices, and tactical interdiction expertise to enhance the collective capabilities of participating nations to counter illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing and other sea-based illicit activity.

While at sea, Spencer also interdicted a Brazilian sailing vessel carrying 3,040 kilograms of suspected cocaine worth over $109 million.

Spencer is a 270-foot, Famous-class medium endurance cutter with a crew of 96. The cutter’s primary mission areas include homeland security, law enforcement, counterdrug, search and rescue, migrant interdiction, and fisheries enforcement in support of U.S. Coast Guard operations throughout the Western Hemisphere.