‘For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Chuck him out, the brute!”But it’s “Saviour of ’is country” when the guns begin to shoot’
—Rudyard Kipling (1865–1936)
The crew of Coast Guard rescue cutter USCG-6 (ex-83334) stand a vigilant watch off the coast of Normandy during the D-Day invasion in June 1944. Sixty 83-foot wooden-hulled coastal patrol craft were shipped to the United Kingdom in preparation for the invasion. There they were modified for service as rescue craft and formed into Rescue Flotilla One based at Poole, England. To ease identification issues in the Allied invasion fleet, their original hull numbers were removed and they were assigned new designations of 1 to 60 with the “USCG” prefix. The cutters of Rescue Flotilla One saved more than 400 men on D-Day alone and by the time the unit was decommissioned in December 1944, they had saved 1,438.