USCGC Reliance (WMEC 615) returned her homeport in Pensacola Friday, following a 67-day Caribbean Sea patrol.
During the patrol, Reliance’s crew collaborated with numerous Coast Guard assets and other Department of Homeland Security boats and aircraft to detect, deter, and intercept unsafe and illegal ventures to the United States.
In support of the Coast Guard’s Seventh District, Reliance primarily patrolled the South Florida Straits, south of the Florida Keys, and the Windward-passage, off the northwest coast of Haiti, contributing to the interdiction and care of 613 migrants and 13 detainees. Additionally, Reliance’s crew repatriated 120 migrants to Santiago, Cuba, marking the first visit by a U.S. warship to the port in more than 50 years.
“I am extremely pleased by this crew and proud to be a part of this team. Reliance departed homeport shorthanded and was immediately put to the test, performing especially high-tempo migrant interdiction operations. At all hours of day and night, the Reliance crew responded superbly, facilitating the safe care and repatriation of a historic surge of Cuban migrants while also completing qualification requirements and robust training exercises necessary following the summer transfer season,” said Cmdr. Brian Chapman, commanding officer of Reliance.
Reliance is a 210-foot medium endurance cutter homeported in Pensacola with a crew of 77. The cutter’s primary missions are counter-drug operations, migrant interdiction, enforcement of federal fishery laws, and search and rescue in support of Coast Guard operations throughout the Western Hemisphere.