The Manitowoc Company, Inc. recently launched the U.S.Coast Guard Cutter Oak, the eleventh ship in a series of 16 seagoing buoy tenders being built at Manitowoc's Marinette Marine subsidiary. This 225-ft. Juniper-class vessel is part of a series of contracts, which were awarded to Marinette in 1993 and 1998.
The launch ceremony, which took place on January 26, featured U.S. Representative Henry E. Brown Jr. (D-SC) as the keynote speaker; his wife, Billye Brown, the sponsor of the ship, performed the traditional christening ceremony. Rear Admiral Jay Carmichael, commander of the seventh U.S. Coast Guard District also attended the ceremony.
The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Oak will homeport in Charleston, S.C., under the command of LCDR James M. Cash. It will have a complement of six officers and 34 enlisted personnel. Oas and her sister cutters now operating in both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans are equipped to perform search and rescue, law enforcement, pollution response, and domestic icebreaking missions, as well as servicing aids to navigation.
The USCGC Oak is named after an earlier Coast Guard cutter from 1921 through 1943, assigned to the Third Light House District in Staten Island, N.Y. The original Oak was decommissioned on November 6, 1964, after 43 years of service.
Besides its buoy tender construction program for the U.S. Coast Guard, Marinette Marine is constructing three 310-ft. passenger ferries for the City of New York and two 127-ft. oceangoing tugs for a commercial customer.