Remembering Life Aboard Coast Guard Icebreakers

The retired Coast Guard icebreaker Glacier prepares for its final voyage. (Craig Miller/Climate Watch)
On Monday Climate Watch Senior Editor Craig Miller wrote about a Coast Guard icebreaker ship, the Glacier, that’s headed to the scrapyard

Glaciers are slipping away everywhere. It was tough to see this one go.

I’m talking about a ship, not an actual river of ice. This morning I watched the retired Coast Guard icebreaker Glacier cast off on what is likely to be its final voyage, from a Vallejo dry dock to a scrapyard in Brownsville, Texas. It seemed like a poignant moment, given the decline of the U.S. icebreaker fleet. Just as Arctic seas are opening up to unprecedented shipping activity, the Coast Guard is left with just one icebreaker in working order. Icebreakers are important research platforms and could play a vital role in responding to oil spills from offshore drilling in far northern waters. Full post

Since that post went up, about a dozen former crew members of the Glacier and other icebreakers have managed to find it and post comments reminiscing about their duty. Take a look in this Storify

Related

  • Richardsellers

    I was on the Southwind Arctic East 71 Arctic East 72 and Deep Freeze 72. Great Ship,she’s history now. Had good and bad times. Richard Sellers 

Author

Jon Brooks

Jon Brooks writes mostly on film for KQED Arts. He is also an online editor and writer for KQED's daily news blog, News Fix. Jon is a playwright whose work has been produced in San Francisco, New York, Italy, and around the U.S.

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