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Saturday, July 13, 2024

USCG Commissions First Pacific Northwest Fast Response Cutter

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

June 28, 2024

Coast Guard Cutter David Duren (WPC 1156) (Photo: Steven Strohmaier / U.S. Coast Guard)

Coast Guard Cutter David Duren (WPC 1156) (Photo: Steven Strohmaier / U.S. Coast Guard)

The U.S. Coast Guard commissioned its 56th Fast Response Cutter and first one to be stationed in the Pacific Northwest during a ceremony held in Astoria, Ore., Thursday, marking the vessel's official entry into active service.

Built by Bollinger Shipyards and delivered to the Coast Guard earlier this year, the Coast Guard Cutter David Duren (WPC-1156) is the first of three planned Fast Response Cutter’s (FRC) to be homeported in Astoria.

The ceremony was presided by Vice Adm. Andrew Tiongson, Pacific Area Commander. Members from the Duren family were also on hand, including the cutter’s sponsor, Dawn Duren.

The namesake for the cutter, Master Chief Petty Officer David Duren, enlisted in the Coast Guard in 1965 and retired in 1993. During his career, Duren became a heavy weather coxswain and graduated from the Coast Guard’s National Motor Lifeboat School in 1969, qualifying as Coast Guard surfman No. 100.

During his tenure, Duren received two Coast Guard Medals for exceptional heroism and the Douglas Munro Inspirational Leadership Award. He deployed on search and rescue cases more than any other officer-in-charge at the time and during one year, he participated in 250 cases. Personnel under his command received a total of 24 medals and awards.

The crew of the David Duren will primarily serve in the Pacific Ocean, Puget Sound, Strait of Juan de Fuca, and the Columbia River. The Sentinel-class FRC is designed for multiple missions, including search and rescue; fishery patrols; ports, waterways, and coastal security; drug and migrant interdiction; and national defense.

The Coast Guard has ordered a total of 65 FRCs to replace the 1980s-era Island-class 110-foot patrol boats. The FRCs feature advanced command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment; over-the-horizon cutter boat deployment to reach vessels of interest; and improved habitability and seakeeping.