SAULT SAINTE MARIE, Mich. (WJMN) – The United States Coast Guard will present the Captain David P. Dobbins Award to Captain Kate Faust and the crew of the Shipwreck Express for their efforts to save two kayakers.
The ceremony will take place at 9:00 A.M. on June 16 and the award will be presented by Captain Anthony Jones, Sector Commander of Sector Sault Ste. Marie. The Captain David P. Dobbins Award recognizes outstanding actions accomplished while engaging in search and rescue missions on the Great Lakes. The award is link to the heritage of Captain Dobbins, the first Superintendent of the U.S. Lifesaving Service’s Great Lakes Ninth District in 1876. Captain Dobbins was a native of Erie, Pennsylvania and distinguished himself by performing and organizing heroic rescue efforts for the Schooner Oneida in 1853, the Schooner Comet in 1860 and many others before the Lifesaving Service was officially established.
Captain Kate Faust and crew are being recognized for a rescue that ocurred on September 20, 2020. Captain Faust observed two kayakers in distress near Grand Island, MI while underway on a sightseeing cruise. There were 51 passengers onboard at the time. The kayakers were paddling against 32 mph winds in 3-4 foot seas for over 90 minutes. Captain Faust altered her ship’s course without hesitation to render assistance. She rescued teh two kayakers and recovered their watercraft in extremely difficult conditions using her vessel’s homemade man overboard recovery system. Once on board, the kayakers were monitored, rested and rehydrated.