The Alex Haley Wins Rare Service Medal

Diana Gish/KMXT

A ceremony took place at noon Friday aboard the Coast Guard cutter "Alex Haley".

All of the Crew Members of the Alex Haley will be awarded the Coast Guard’s Arctic Service Medal for duty they completed this fall. In order for a unit to receive the distinction the ship must spend 21 consecutive days above the Arctic Circle. The Alex Haley spent 23 days carrying out maritime domain patrol North of Pt. Barrow to the polar ice edge in September and October. During that time they kept a record of fishing vessels, cruise ships and recreational boats in the area. The crew was especially interested in it’s contact with recreational boats travelling the northwest passage including one from New York City. The Alex Haley returned to Kodiak once the sea ice started forming

The Alex Haley is a 282-foot medium endurance cutter It’s named for the Coast Guard’s first chief journalist, who later authored the book Roots. It can carry an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter and has a crew of 99.

All of whom will now wear the Arctic Service Medal: A cool award for being cold.

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