By Karen Robes Meeks
The US Coast Guard on Saturday paid tribute to deceased Coast Guardsmen and mariners with a morning memorial service at the Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center in Ilwaco, Wash.
The event, which included words from former shipmates, land and sea wreath ceremonies and the ringing of the bell after each name was read, honored those who lost their lives to help others in trouble along Oregon and Washington coastal waters.
Among those recognized were four Coast Guardsmen aboard Motor Life Boat 36384 who died on Feb. 5, 1946, while searching for two crab boats near Ocean City, Wash., and three Coast Guardsmen aboard Motor Life Boat 44363 who died on Feb. 12, 1997, trying to save two crewmembers aboard the 31-foot sailing vessel Gale Runner near the Quillayute River Bar.
“Memorials provide an important link to the past, and it is important to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice,” said Capt. Jeremy Smith, commander, Coast Guard Sector Columbia River. “These memorials allow us to remember the bravery and courage of those who have come before us, while also reminding us of the risks and dangers of our chosen profession.”