Local Coast Guard Station Receives Prestigious Recognition

August 8, 2011 Updated Aug 8, 2011 at 12:20 PM EDT

By Kyla Igoe

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August 8, 2011 Updated Aug 8, 2011 at 12:20 PM EDT


Youngstown, NY (Release) - The crew of Coast Guard Station Niagara in Youngstown, N.Y., is scheduled to receive the Coast Guard's revered Sumner I. Kimball Readiness Award Monday morning during an official ceremony at the small boat station.

During the 8 a.m. ceremony, presided over by Capt. Steven Wischmann, commander of Coast Guard Sector Buffalo, the station crew will be officially recognized for exceptional performance in achieving a grade of more than 90 percent during an arduous, week-long inspection. This inspection includes the examination of the station's response boats, completion of crew knowledge tests, and assessment of the unit's practical drills and training plan.

"This award is a great achievement for the crew," said Chief Petty Officer Robert Snow, officer-in-charge of Station Niagara. "I am very proud of the hard work and dedication of the men and women assigned to Station Niagara; not just their efforts that earned us this award, but every day. It represents their desire to meet the highest standards of a small boat station and to serve the community that we live in."

Only about 10 percent of the Coast Guard's 191 small boat stations nationwide will receive the award in any given year. Station Niagara is the second small boat station in 2011 to receive the award within Sector Buffalo's area of responsibility. Sector Buffalo extends 570 miles from Vermillion, Ohio, to Massena, N.Y.

The award cites the crew's hard work and efforts to maintain the Coast Guard's highest standards of boat and crew readiness. It also represents the overall high level of excellence and professionalism in executing all Coast Guard missions.

The award is named for the first general superintendent of the U.S. Life-Saving Service, which was later incorporated into the U.S. Coast Guard. Sumner I. Kimball was appointed to the position in 1878 due to his persuasive efforts in convincing Congress to improve upon what was a system of volunteer life-saving stations. Kimball's elevated standards laid the foundation for modern day Coast Guard small boat stations.

Station Niagara is a multi-mission small boat station that executes all Coast Guard missions, including search and rescue, maritime law enforcement, and homeland security.