Stonington, Conn. – The Coast Guard Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to the education and welfare of all Coast Guard members and their families, announced today that its annual Tribute to the Eighth Coast Guard District will be held at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, Louisiana on Friday, March 10, 2017. At the event, the Foundation will recognize the units that responded to the flooding in West Virginia, Baton Rouge, and as a result of Hurricane Matthew in June, August and October, 2016, respectively. Ten members from Baton Rouge, New Orleans and the Ohio River Valley will represent the units at the event.

The event will feature Coast Guard Foundation board member and retired Coast Guard Commandant, Admiral Thad Allen as the master of ceremonies. Keynote remarks will be provided by Admiral Paul F. Zukunft, Commandant of the Coast Guard and Admiral Charles Michel, Vice-Commandant. RADM David Callahan, commander of the Eight Coast Guard District will also be in attendance.

Since the Great Flood of 1993, Coast Guard sectors along the Western Rivers have developed flood response capability in the form of the Western River Flood Punts (WRFP). The units consist of small, flat-bottomed boats capable of shallow-water rescues, especially in urban environments. The teams played an integral role during Hurricane Katrina where they saved more than 13,000 lives. WRFPs continue to provide critical search and rescue capabilities during urban and inland flooding responses. Most recently, the teams provided on-scene support to local law enforcement and conducted numerous rescues.

“The brave men and women of the United States Coast Guard volunteer to put themselves in harm’s way to ensure the safety of others,” said Susan Ludwig, president, Coast Guard Foundation. “Often it goes unnoticed that these individuals live in the area and their families are equally affected by the natural disasters that they are responding to. We are awed by the professionalism and dedication they display in the face of physical and emotional danger. It is our goal to give back to them in their time of need and we are honored to recognizing their sacrifice.”

The Foundation supported Coast Guard families impacted by the Louisiana Floods with over $75,000 in direct support through a partnership with the Chief Petty Officers Association, providing financial relief for individual families and morale support to the units that responded to the floods.

The Coast Guard Foundation’s Tribute to the Eighth Coast Guard District will be held on Friday, March 10, 2017 at the National World War II Museum, 945 Magazine Street New Orleans, Louisiana. A cocktail reception will begin at 6:30 p.m. with dinner and the program following at 7:30 p.m.

To learn more about the Coast Guard Foundation or to help support its work, please visit www.coastguardfoundation.org or call (860) 535-0786

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