USCGC Diligence (WMEC-616)
|Builder:||Todd Shipyards, Houston, Texas|
|Acquired:||20 July 1963|
|Homeport:||Wilmington, North Carolina|
|Length:||210 ft 6 in (64.16 m)|
|Beam:||34 ft (10 m)|
|Draft:||10 ft 6 in (3.20 m) max|
|Propulsion:||2 x V16 2550 horsepower ALCO diesel engines|
|Speed:||max 18 knots; 2,700 mile range|
|Range:||cruise 14 knots; 6,100 mile range|
|Complement:||12 officers, 63 enlisted|
|2 x AN/SPS-64|
|Armament:||1 x Mk 38 25mm machine gun
2 x M2HB .50 caliber machine gun
|Aircraft carried:||HH-65 Dolphin|
Diligence moors up in downtown Wilmington and is the 6th US Coast Guard Cutter to bear that name and be homeported in Wilmington, North Carolina, one of only fourteen cities in the country with the designation of "A Coast Guard City". Diligence is capable of performing any of the missions that white-hulled Coast Guard Cutters traditionally perform; ranging from alien migrant interdiction operations (AMIO) and drug interdiction missions down in the Caribbean, or fisheries protection of the Atlantic seaboard, or search and rescue anywhere in between.
Seen in the 1966 movie "Around the World Under the Sea" with Lloyd Bridges.
On April 23, 1982, the Diligence was attacked by the navy of Conch Republic. The Schooner "Western Union", under command of Captain John Kraus, went forth into the harbor at Key West and attacked the cutter with water balloons, Conch fritters and stale Cuban bread. The Diligence fought back with fire hoses and thus commenced the "Great Battle of the Conch Republic". Vastly outgunned, the Republic's Prime Minister promptly surrendered and demanded foreign aid.
- Todd Shipyards[dead link]
- "The Proud History of the Conch Republic". www.conchrepublicmilitaryforces.com. Retrieved 6 July 2014.
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