2012 News and Events
Halifax Remembers RMS Titanic
15 April 2012
On April 15 Acting Principal Officer Koski and Commander Lisa Mack of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Ice Patrol attended a Memorial Service to mark the 100th anniversary of the Titanic disaster.
The event took place at Fairview Lawn Cemetery in Halifax where 121 Titanic victims are buried.
During the ceremony, Commander Mack spoke about the founding of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Ice Patrol after the disaster and stated, “not a single ship heeding Ice Patrol warnings has struck an iceberg” since the Ice Patrol was founded.
Remarks by Commander Lisa Mack of the U.S. Coast Guard Ice Patrol at the April 15 Ceremony in Halifax
Good afternoon. Thank you for the opportunity to speak on behalf of all of the dedicated men and women of the United States Coast Guard, especially those who have served at the International Ice Patrol over the last century. Our unit was established as a direct result of the sinking of Titanic in 1912. Within a month of the sinking, the U.S. government sent two U.S. Navy ships to the Grand Banks to monitor iceberg danger and warn transatlantic mariners. The following year, the U.S. Coast Guard took over the mission, and with the exception of the two World Wars, the Ice Patrol has been active each season since 1913. Not a single ship heeding Ice Patrol warnings has struck an iceberg since Titanic.
Although the various maritime nations of the world have entrusted the management of the Ice Patrol service to the United States our small unit could not accomplish this mission alone. We rely on the outstanding partnership of the Canadian Ice Service and the Canadian Coast Guard, a testament that international cooperation is critical to maritime safety.
Each year since 1923, the Ice Patrol has paused during an iceberg patrol to commemorate the sinking of Titanic with deployment of a memorial wreath. Yesterday, our planned commemoration flight was diverted to a search and rescue mission hundreds of miles from Titanic’s location. That rapid diversion was a sign of how much progress we have made in protecting life at sea since Titanic. With our aircraft engaged in another mission, I had the honor of flying in Transport Canada’s Dash-7 aircraft over the Titanic resting site. With great respect and reverence the Canadian aircraft conducted a joint at-sea memorial with the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Juniper, a great tribute to our longstanding partnership. The centennial of the Titanic tragedy serves as a poignant reminder of the importance of the Ice Patrol mission and the dedication of both of our countries to maritime safety. Thank you.