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USCGC Tamaroa


Detailed History


These excepts of the history of the Tamaroa are from the documented history of this vessel and from personal accounts and stories of her past crew.


The Tamaroa and her sister ships Ute, Lipan, Chilula, Cherokee, and Avoyel were well known for their rugged construction and sea-keeping abilities in their Coast Guard duties. The accommodations for the crew were spartan, their technology was not advanced, but they were dependable in a heavy sea. These ships were often stationed in areas where the rough nature of the seas made operation of more modern types too costly or impractical. 



World War II – Served in the Pacific Theater, duties included towing disabled ships out of the line of fire in naval engagements. Torpedoed in the stern by a Japanese aircraft and run aground to avoid sinking. Transferred to the Coast Guard in 1946.


05 January 1952 – Towed FV Gudyontiff


26 July 1956 – Assisted recovery of survivors after the collision of ocean liners Andrea Doria and Stockholm.


March 1963 – Sank at the pier while moored at Governor’s Island. Raised and refitted for duty.


02 January 1967 – Towed yacht Petrel to Montauk point.


30 April 1967 – Towed FV Deepwater to New Bedford, MA.


02 July 1967 – Towed FV Foam to New Bedford, MA.


22 July 1976 – Seized Italian FV Amuruso Quarto for fisheries violations.


28 July 1976 – Seized Japanese FV Ookumi Maru near Cape May, NJ.


May-June 1979 – Towed garbage during NY strike of 1979.


25 September 1980 – Fired on and seized MV Roondiep. Vessel had twenty tons of marijuana aboard.


13 January 1982 – Seized vessel Jim Hawkins with seven tons of marijuana aboard.


24 February 1984 – Seized FV Apollo III near Cape Cod with sixteen tons of marijuana aboard.


31 August 1987 – Boarded liner Scandinavian Star following a bomb threat.


October 1991 – Attempted rescue of man stranded on SV Satori in heavy seas during “No-Name” storm of 1991.


October 1991 – Rescued 7 crashed Air National Guard helicopter crewman in “No-Name” storm of 1991. Helo crashed while searching for FV Andrea Gail.


18 July 1992 – Boarded FV Fish Finder and issued violation for crossing the Hague Line. Vessel is not seized as Tamaroa is the only Cutter on patrol and can’t escort.


21 July 1992 – Seized FV Barnacle Bill for violating the Hague Line. Master attempted to scuttle vessel and a prize crew is put aboard for tow.


22 July 1992 – Seized FV First Light for Hague Line violation.


02 Aug 1992 – Boarded FV United States after vessel is observed fishing across the Hague Line in Canadian waters. Violation issued, catch too small to warrant seizure.


February 1993 – Towed FV Katahdin after extinguishing a fire in the vessel’s engine room.


March 1993 – Served as SAR standby during the freak Blizzard of 1993 "Storm of the Century". Rode out the heavy seas near Provincetown, Mass. Unconfirmed sea state was 50-60 feet with wind speeds reaching 120+ knots.


June – October 1993 – Moored in Curtis Bay Maryland while crew manned USNS Vindicator. Vindicator was undergoing acceptance trials to be accepted by the USCG as a new class of cutter, possibly to replace the Tamaroa. The Vindicator later became the USCGC Vindicator, manned by many of the Tam’s crew, during Operation Able Manner near Haiti. This followed the Tam’s decommissioning.


February 1994 – USCGC Tamaroa decommissioned at New Castle, New Hampshire.


1995? – Placed on display at the USS Independence Museum in New York Harbor.



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