NEW YORK — The Coast Guard formally recognized the City of New York as a Coast Guard City Monday during a ceremony at Pier 17 in Manhattan near the historic Coast Guard Cutter Eagle.
Vice Adm. Paul Thomas, the Coast Guard deputy commandant for mission support, bestowed this honor to New York City with approval from congress.
“Communities around the nation support and contribute to our members and their families," said Thomas. "It’s just that some communities do that better than others, with more intentionality and more focused planning. Those communities are designated Coast Guard cities and New York City has certainly done that, and much, much more.”
James Hendon, the commissioner of the New York City Department of Veterans’ Services participated in the ceremony.
“The Coast Guard was founded just down the street at Federal Hall,” said Hendon. “There are so many areas that this relationship touches, and so we’re happy to be here today to continue to proclaim it.”
New York City was initially designated as the 25th Coast Guard City during a designation ceremony Feb. 4, 2018. The Coast Guard City program was established by Congress in 1998 to recognize the support local governments and communities provide to Coast Guard members and their families. There are currently 29 Coast Guard Cities nationwide.
The honor, bestowed by the Commandant of the Coast Guard with approval from Congress, recognizes New York’s longstanding efforts to embrace Coast Guard members and their families stationed in New York during their tour of duty.
The designation is not intended as a lifetime award, but as recognition of an active and ongoing commitment to support and honor the Coast Guard. The designation remains in effect for five years, after which the city is required to apply for recertification.
From its founding in 1790 by Alexander Hamilton to the present day, the Coast Guard maintains safety and security on New York City’s waterways and protects the city’s residents and tourists. This relationship is demonstrated through events such as the helicopter accident on the East River in March 2018, New York City’s and the Coast Guard’s response to Hurricane Sandy in Oct. 2012, and historical moments like the evacuation of over 500,000 people from Lower Manhattan following the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. The Coast Guard is always ready – alongside NYPD, FDNY, and the Department of Emergency Management – to safeguard the city.
More information about Coast Guard cities can be found at https://www.uscg.mil/Community/cities/.