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Blessings for a new fireboat in Groton Long Point

The Groton Long Point Fire Department blessed a new fireboat as it went into service Saturday.

Lt. Bill Appel, a U.S. Navy chaplain assigned to the Coast Guard Academy, offered prayers and blessed the vessel with holy water.

Steven Koch, deputy commander at Coast Guard Sector Long Island Sound, spoke to the value of the boat in the Connecticut Region Four Marine Group, which includes the shoreline from the Connecticut River to Watch Hill, RI.

Congressman Joe Courtney, D-2nd District, delivered comments, as did Groton Long Point Association President Mike Flynn and Fire Chief Arnie Lotring.

The 32-foot Firebrand 30, manufactured by MetalCraft Marine, Inc., of Watertown, NY, is 14,000 pounds, with dual 250 HP outbound engines and a 400 HP engine that drives a 1500 gallons per minute fire pump and 3 kilowatt generator.

The $430,142.23 price tag was funded by a $320,804.76 FEMA Port Security Grant, $100,000 from the Groton Long Point Assn. Inc., and $9337.47 Groton Long Point Volunteer Fire Company.

s.elliot@theday.com

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