Mass. Maritime Training Vessel Returns After Hurricane Relief Deployment

BUZZARDS BAY – The T.S. Kennedy returned to the Massachusetts Maritime Academy Friday morning after spending the last two months in the Caribbean helping with hurricane relief efforts.

The vessel was called into service in September by the federal government to respond to Texas in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.

FEMA workers were living on the ship to free up hotel rooms and resources on land for those who had been displaced in the Houston area.

Shortly after arriving in Texas, the Kennedy was reassigned to the storm-ravaged Caribbean. It served out the remainder of its mission helping with relief efforts in St. Thomas and Puerto Rico.

The Kennedy arrived shortly before 9 a.m. Friday and was a welcome sight for school officials and students.

“She is the cornerstone of our entire campus,” said Elizabeth Stevenson, the Vice President of Enrollment and External Affairs for Mass Maritime. “When folks come down Academy Drive, they expect to see that 540-foot ship docked at the end of the pier.”

The T.S. Kennedy departed Buzzards Bay on September 6 for a 30-day deployment with an option for an additional 30 days. About a dozen staff members from Mass Maritime were onboard.

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