April 2, 2020 —
The Coast Guard accepted delivery of the 38th fast response cutter (FRC), Harold Miller, in Key West, Florida, April 2.
It will be the third of three FRCs stationed in Galveston, Texas.
Boatswain’s Mate 2nd Class Harold Miller, the cutter’s namesake, was one of four Coast Guard coxswains who became the first enlisted members of the Coast Guard to receive the Silver Star Medal. The four served with the Marines during the amphibious invasion of Tulagi, Solomon Islands, in August 1942. On Aug. 7, 1942, Miller, along with the other three coxswains, landed the first wave of the Marine Corps’ Raider Battalion on the beaches of Tulagi; in the following three days, they also delivered vitally needed equipment, ammunition and supplies. For their role in the landing of the Marines’ first wave, and capture of Tulagi, the four coxswains were awarded the Silver Star Medal.
FRCs are designed for multiple missions which include drug and migrant interdiction; ports, waterways and coastal security; fishery patrols; search and rescue; and national defense. They feature advanced command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment; over-the-horizon cutter boat deployment to reach vessels of interest; and improved habitability and seakeeping. The ships have a maximum speed of 28 knots, range of 2,500 nautical miles and endurance of at least a five-day deployment.
Thirty-six are in service: 12 in Florida; seven in Puerto Rico; four in California; three each in Hawaii and New Jersey; two each in Alaska, Mississippi and North Carolina; and one in Texas. The Coast Guard has ordered 50 of the cutters to date. Future FRC homeports include Santa Rita, Guam; Astoria, Oregon; and Kodiak, Seward and Sitka, Alaska.
For more information: Fast Response Cutter Program page