Two of my shipmates found an old life ring from our ship at a Ketchikan, AK antique shop. I couldn’t pass it up. After hearing about it I made a trip to the shop and bought it, along with a 1928 nautical chart of our current working grounds in Chatham Strait.
Upon further inspection, the ship consensus is that the life ring was from the original commissioning in 1968. The stamped approval date on the ring is December 1966, which is only 3 months before the Fairweather’s launch date in March 1967.
There are several signatures on the ring dated 1972 indicating that it was likely “surplussed” that year to a local establishment or individual. The likely reason for the “surplussing” was the change in the ship’s designation when the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey became a part of the new parent organization, NOAA in 1970.
A fun find at the end of my service on the NOAA Ship Fairweather.