By NANETTE LoBIONDO GALLOWAY
LONGPORT – The American Legion Post 469 Monday provided a lasting memorial to five Coast Guardsmen who perish during a daring rescue attempt in the storm of March 6, 1932.
The brief but meaningful service was held at Thomas B. Reed Park following the Coast Guard Station Atlantic City’s annual memorial service held in Atlantic City for Harold Livingston, William Graham, David A. Barnett, Marvin E. Rhordes and William R. Garton, who died trying to rescue the fishing boat “Anna” during the nor’easter storm.
The plaque installed at the base of the borough’s sundial memorial depicting important dates in U.S. military history, also honored then-Coast Guard’s Commanding Officer Lt. James Turner, the sole survivor of the rescue who went on to become a much-loved leader of the Longport Beach Patrol for more than 20 years under the moniker Capt. Turner.
Legionnaire John Stroebele, a lifeguard who served under Turner’s leadership, relayed the story of the rescue to the small crowd gathered for the ceremony.
Turner’s daughter Mimi and granddaughter Cammy and Mimi’s son-in-law Alan Dolinsky attended the service along with a contingent of Coast Guard and Auxiliary members.
Station Atlantic City Commanding Officer, Lt. Alex Kloo, the 30th commanding officer since Turner’s tenure, said it was “humbling” to see leadership in an unbroken line through the generations.
“New Jersey holds a special place in the history of the USCG and the U.S. Life Saving Service. Some of the very first life and saving outposts were here on the Jersey shore protecting the shipping traffic up and down the coast. The organization has changed through the years from Life Saving Service to the modern day Coast Guard, remembering that history today matters that much more,” he said.
He invited participants to visit the Atlantic City Station to see the plaque installed there that commemorates the “long blue line that has come before us,” he said.
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