This Day in U.S. Coast Guard History – January 3
1882- The watch at Station No. 13, Second District, Massachusetts, reported at about 4 p.m., the collision of two schooners, two and a half miles east southeast of the station. Launching the surfboat, the crew proceeded to the vessels. The smaller vessel, the British schooner Dart, was boarded first. She was out from Saint John, NB and bound for New York with a cargo of lumber and a crew of four persons. The vessel was badly damaged, having her bowsprit, jib boom, and headgear carried away. The life-saving crew at once set to work. They cleared away the wreck and weighed her anchor, which had been let go in the collision. By this time, the steamer Hercules, of Philadelphia had come alongside and Dart’s master arranged for a tow to Vineyard Haven. The life-saving crew ran the hawser from the schooner to the steamer and sent them on their way. The other schooner, in the meantime, had sailed away.
1944 -CDR Frank Erickson flew a cargo of blood plasma in a Coast Guard HNS-1 helicopter from Brooklyn to a hospital in Sandy Hook, New Jersey in the first recorded lifesaving flight conducted by a rotary-winged aircraft.
2003- The CGC Boutwell departed Alameda in preparation for supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. She began operations in the Arabian Gulf on 14 February 2003. Prior to the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom, her crew conducted maritime interception boardings to enforce U.N. sanctions against Iraq. At the outbreak of hostilities and throughout the conflict, she operated in the strategically critical and politically sensitive Khawr Abd Allah and Shaat Al Arab Waterways, providing force protection to the massive coalition fleet, securing Iraqi oil terminals, and preventing the movement of weapons, personnel or equipment by Saddam Hussein's regime or other guerilla or terrorist forces.
(Source: USCG Historian’s Office)