Where in the World are the WHECs?

The Former USCGC Morgenthau, now in Vvietnamese service

The Philippines has a continuing interest in the 378 foot WHECs, after all they already have three, and it appears they may want another. Certainly they and other operators (Nigeria, Bangladesh, and Vietnam) will want to cooperate in finding ways to keep them operational.

An online discussion group called “Defense of the Republic of the Philippines” has a page entitled “Where in the World are the WHECs?” devoted to the topic. It includes both the old and new names and hull numbers. It also looks at the future disposition of 378s still in US Coast Guard service (Sherman, Midgett, Mellon, and Douglas Munro). (Yes we currently have both a USCGC Douglas Munro (WHEC-724) and a USCGC Munro (WMSL-755).

Sherman is expected to be decommissioned in 2018, Midgett in 2019, Mellon in 2020. Douglas Munro’s decommissioning is not currently scheduled but will probably happen in 2021.

The decommissioning information is based on Annex J of a MARAD report, “OFFICE OF SHIP DISPOSAL PROGRAMS ANNUAL REPORT FOR FISCAL YEAR 2016.”

 

13 thoughts on “Where in the World are the WHECs?

  1. I suspect we will not be transferring just one to any of these countries. Vietnam will probably get a second ship. That would leave three others for transfer. Georgia or Ukraine might be strong possibilities, but probably one or the other, but not both. Duarte in the Philippines has said he does not want any more second hand equipment so maybe not them. Either Nigeria or Bangladesh will likely get a third ship.

  2. Sherman to be decommissioned March 29. Press release below.

    HONOLULU — Media are invited to observe the decommissioning of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Sherman (WHEC 720), the Coast Guard’s ninth High Endurance Cutter, Thursday.
    Sherman’s operational resume includes action in the Vietnam War, major drug interdictions – including the largest individual cocaine seizure in U.S. history, maritime law enforcement cases, living marine resource protection, alien migration interdiction and numerous rescues.
    Sherman was launched Sept. 3, 1968, and was the sixth of 12 Hamilton-class High Endurance Cutters built by Avondale Shipyards in New Orleans. High Endurance Cutters are the largest cutters, aside from the three major Icebreakers and National Security Cutters, ever built for the Coast Guard.
    Sherman is also one of only two Coast Guard Cutters to hold the Vietnam Service Award and only Coast Guard Cutter to hold the Combat Action Ribbon for action in the Vietnam War. Sherman is the last remaining active U.S. warship in the Coast Guard or Navy to have sunk an enemy vessel in combat.

    WHO: Vice Adm. Fred Midgette, commander, Coast Guard Pacific Area, will preside over the ceremony.

    WHAT: Decommissioning ceremony for Coast Guard’s ninth High Endurance Cutter.

    WHEN: Thursday, March 29, at 2 p.m. Media should arrive at Coast Guard Base Honolulu no later than 1:15 p.m.

    WHERE: Coast Guard Base Honolulu, 400 Sand Island Parkway, Honolulu, HI 96819. Media will be met at the front gate and escorted.

    Please RSVP to Coast Guard 14th District External Affairs at 808-341-9849 or 808-535-3230 by 3 p.m., Wednesday.

  3. USCGC Midgett now in Commission Special.

    R 231711 JUN 20
    FM COMDT COGARD WASHINGTON DC//CCG//
    TO ALCOAST
    UNCLAS//N04500//
    ALCOAST 249/20
    COMDTNOTE 4500
    SUBJ: USCGC JOHN MIDGETT (WHEC 726) 48 YEARS OF SERVICE
    1. On 31 Mar 2020, after 48 years of faithful service to our nation, CGC JOHN MIDGETT
    transitioned to In-Commission Special status. This status begins the decommissioning
    process. Throughout the cutter’s service, CGC JOHN MIDGETT crews embodied and honored the
    cutter’s motto – Dedication, Service, Excellence.
    2. CGC JOHN MIDGETT was named in honor of Chief Warrant Officer John Allen Midgett, Jr.
    who served for nearly forty years with the U.S. Lifesaving Service and the Coast Guard.
    He was one of five Midgett family members awarded the Gold Lifesaving Medal for heroic
    action during the rescue of 36 crewmen from the torpedoed British tanker MIRLO in 1918.
    The twelfth and final ship in the Hamilton Class cutter fleet, CGC JOHN MIDGETT launched
    from Avondale Shipyard in Louisiana and was commissioned on 17 Mar 1972. Alameda, CA
    was CGC JOHN MIDGETT’s first homeport. The cutter remained there until temporarily
    decommissioned in 1991 to undergo the Fleet Renovation and Modernization (FRAM) project.
    Upon completion of FRAM in 1992, CGC JOHN MIDGETT sailed for Seattle, WA, which would serve
    as the cutter’s homeport for the next 28 years.
    3. Throughout the cutter’s distinguished career, CGC JOHN MIDGETT served in domestic and
    international theaters, from the Bering Sea to the South China Sea, and from the Eastern
    Pacific Ocean to the Arabian Gulf. CGC JOHN MIDGETT will be remembered as an ambassador for
    global maritime cooperation, a combatant of drug smugglers and transnational criminal
    organizations, a protector of living marine resources, and a welcome sight for mariners
    in distress.
    4. CGC JOHN MIDGETT’s proud legacy of honorable service to the nation spanned nearly five
    decades. On Christmas Day 1996, CGC JOHN MIDGETT’s crew demonstrated remarkable ingenuity
    by conducting a “power rudder” tandem tow of the disabled M/V BANAESA to Adak, Alaska
    with the tug AGNES FOSS. In 1999, CGC JOHN MIDGETT became the first Coast Guard cutter to
    deploy to the Arabian Gulf with a U.S. Navy Battle Group, serving as an integral member
    of the USS CONSTELLATION Battle Group and enforcing UN Security Council sanctions against
    Iraq. From September 2006 to March 2007, CGC JOHN MIDGETT deployed as part of Expeditionary
    Strike Group 5 in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM, circumnavigating the globe and
    transiting the Suez and Panama Canals. While deployed to the Eastern Pacific Ocean in
    support of Joint Interagency Task Force South from December 2016 to March 2017, CGC JOHN
    MIDGETT single-handedly seized more than three tons of cocaine. During the cutter’s last
    year of service, CGC JOHN MIDGETT patrolled the Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska for more than
    200 cumulative days, boarding 67 fishing vessels and prosecuting 16 search and rescue
    cases, ultimately assisting 20 mariners and four vessels in distress.
    5. The professionalism, dedication, and self-sacrifice displayed by Chief Warrant Officer
    Midgett will continue to live on in the service of CGC MIDGETT (WMSL 757), named to honor
    all members of the Midgett family that served in the Coast Guard and its predecessor
    services. To current and past CGC JOHN MIDGETT crews, Plankowners, Shellbacks (Golden, Emerald,
    Horned, or otherwise), subjects of the Golden Dragon, Blue Noses, and even Pollywogs: Well
    Done! Through 48 years of service, CGC JOHN MIDGETT crews admirably served the Coast Guard
    and the Nation. Congratulations and Bravo Zulu!
    6. ADM Karl L. Schultz, Commandant, sends.
    7. Internet release is authorized.

  4. Press release about USCGC Mellon

    R 071307 DEC 20
    FM COMDT COGARD WASHINGTON DC//CCG//
    TO ALCOAST
    UNCLAS//N04500//
    ALCOAST 439/20
    COMDTNOTE 4500
    SUBJ: USCGC MELLON (WHEC 717) 52 YEARS OF SERVICE
    1. On 15 Jul 2020, after 52 years of faithful service to our nation, CGC MELLON
    transitioned to In-Commission Special status. This status begins the decommissioning
    process. Throughout the cutter’s service, CGC MELLON crews embodied and honored
    the cutter’s motto – “Primus Inter Pares,” meaning “First Among Equals.”
    2. CGC MELLON was named in honor of Andrew William Mellon, who served as the 49th
    U.S. Secretary of the Treasury from 1921 to 1932. During his tenure as Treasury
    Secretary, Mellon was known for reducing taxes, prosecuting those who broke
    prohibition laws, and promoting national economic well-being. Commissioned on
    09 Jan 1968 as the third cutter in the Hamilton Class, CGC MELLON was originally
    homeported in Honolulu, HI but moved to its final homeport of Seattle, WA in 1981.
    3. Over the course of the cutter’s distinguished career, CGC MELLON served in a
    multitude of domestic and international theaters, from the Bering Sea to the Hawaiian
    Islands, and from Vladivostok, Russia to Vietnam and Southeast Asia. CGC MELLON will
    be remembered as a lifeline to mariners in distress, an international emissary, a
    champion for living marine resources and a protector of the Pacific.
    4. CGC MELLON’s proud legacy of honorable service to the Nation began in the late
    1960s patrolling Ocean Station November, providing weather data to trans-Pacific
    flights, supporting oceanographic research missions, and performing search-and-rescue
    operations. As part of Task Force 115 during the conflict in Vietnam, CGC MELLON
    twice received the Meritorious Unit Commendation for the crew’s efforts in surveilling
    over 1,200 miles of coastline and 64,000 vessels. In 1980, CGC MELLON joined the U.S.
    Air Force and CGC BOUTWELL in responding to the burning luxury liner PRINSENDAM off
    the coast of Alaska, ensuring the successful rescue of all 520 passengers and crew.
    CGC MELLON received the CG Unit Commendation Medal in 1990 for executing multiple
    military readiness missions, highlighted by the first and only successful firing
    of a HARPOON missile by a Coast Guard cutter. While homeported in Hawaii, CGC MELLON
    earned the Hawaiian nickname “Mellon No Ka Oi,” or “Mellon best of all.” The cutter
    lived up to this moniker through decades of service to mariners, providing firefighting
    and de-watering assistance, tows, and medical attention to those in need. During CGC
    MELLON’s final year of service, the crew spent more than 230 days patrolling the Bering
    Sea and Northern Pacific, conducting 100 safety and fisheries boarding’s of U.S., Japanese,
    Russian, Chinese, and Korean flagged fishing vessels, and assisting in five search-
    and-rescue cases.
    5. To current and past CGC MELLON crews, Plankowners, Shellbacks (Golden, Emerald,
    Horned, or otherwise), subjects of the Golden Dragon, Blue Noses, and even Pollywogs:
    Well Done! Through 52 years of service, CGC MELLON crews admirably served the Coast
    Guard and the Nation. Congratulations and Bravo Zulu!
    6. ADM Karl L. Schultz, Commandant, sends.
    7. Internet release is authorized.

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