Here are a few links that we have found that give us some basic history about the ship.
On October 9th 1982, the USCGC Unimak was on fisheries patrol on the Georges Banks off the New England coast. As can be typical of New England weather in the fall, a costal storm passed up and along the coast causing gale force winds and heavy seas. The Unimak was enroute to a SAR case when they were diverted to assist the stricken F/V Sacred Heart who was disabled and had lost their anchor. This situation placed their 8 crewmen in grave danger. The story of that successful rescue is detailed in the text of the commendation below:
The Commandant of the United States Coast Guard
The Commandant of the Coast Guard takes pleasure in presenting the Coast Guard Unit Commendation to:
USCGC Unimak (WHEC379)
New Bedford, Massachusetts
Service as set forth in the following:
"For exceptionally meritorious service on 9 and 10 October 1982 while rescuing the stricken fishing vessel SACRED HEART. While responding to another SAR case, CGC UNIMAK was diverted to assist the SACRED HEART whose situation had become perilous. On-scene weather at CGC UNIMAK's midnight arrival was 60 knot winds with seas averaging 25 to 30 feet. The disabled SACRED HEART was being set in the direction of shoal water at a speed of three knots. These conditions forced CGC UNIMAK to lay to in the trough and be set down on the stricken vessel to pass the towline. The danger of the situation was heightened by the proximity of the shoals within a few miles of the vessels. CGC UNIMAK made several passes to attempt sending over a towline. The third attempt was successful and an hour passed as the crew of the SACRED HEART labored to get the towing hawser aboard. All the while the ships were pushed by the winds and seas towards the rocks. During the evolution, a rogue wave broached the stern smashing 19 CGC UNIMAK crew members to the deck. Nine people were injured, two seriously. One member was swept over the side hanging onto the lifelines until he was hauled aboard. Despite this, work continued and rescue of SACRED HEART was completed successfully. The valor, performance and unwavering devotion to duty displayed by the crew of the UNIMAK are in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Coast Guard."
The Operational Distinguishing Device is authorized.
All personnel attached to and serving in USCGC UNIMAK for at least 50% of the cited period are hereby authorized to wear the Coast Guard Unit Commendation Ribbon.
For the Commandant,
W. E. Caldwell
Vice Admiral, U. S. Coast Guard
Commander, Atlantic Area
Here are some links to some related sites:
If you would like to contribute a story, picture, info, or a link, please send us an email by clicking the link below.
USCGC Unimak Mail Center