Brief: Businessman Donates Speedboat to Coast Guard Auxiliary

July 13, 2007 — A new 32-foot speedboat will help the St. Croix Flotilla of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary respond quickly to any boating emergency in the waters around the big island, according to a news release from the auxiliary.
Local businessman Dwain Ford donated the boat, named Screaming Eagle. The vessel will belong to the flotilla and will be used for routine patrols, search and rescue and other missions. It has three large outboard engines that will greatly increase the flotilla’s ability to more fully participate in local Coast Guard-coordinated search-and-rescue missions, to be on the scene more quickly when called and to provide on-the-water assistance to the USCG when requested, the release said.
The members of the St. Croix Coast Guard Auxiliary are all volunteers and are part of Division 16 of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary. Division 16 includes two flotillas, one from St. Thomas and one from St. Croix, and is part of District Seven of the Coast Guard Auxiliary, which serves the southeastern United States and the Caribbean territories.
“The addition of this new vessel as a surface facility is an exciting opportunity to increase the flotilla’s participation in local search-and-rescue operations,” the release said. “The vessel will now need to be outfitted with the proper equipment, members will need to be trained in its operation and it must be housed, maintained and kept ready to respond at a moment’s notice.”
For that reason, the auxiliary is making a major effort to raise funds, the release said. The Golden Hook fishing club has agreed to match the first $5,000 raised. The first fund-raising event, a pancake breakfast, was held in May and raised $2,500. A second event, a cabaret night, is planned for Thursday at Elizabeth at the Palms Restaurant.
Tickets are $50 per person and can be purchased from any member of the flotilla, or by calling 340-690-3280. Additional fund-raisers and raffles will be held throughout the rest of the summer.
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