BUFFALO, N.Y. – U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer is calling for federal support to save a WWII-era naval destroyer sinking into Lake Erie.
Last week, the USS The Sullivans, an exhibit at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park, began sinking following a “a serious hull breach.”
On Monday, Schumer visited the site calling for an “all hands on deck” plan to save the iconic landmark.
The Senate Majority Leader is calling for congressionally directed spending to provide fiscal relief to assess damage of the ship, he’s also calling on the Environmental Protection Agency to work with local leaders to help address clean up issues, like oil that may be polluting the waters during the hull breach.
Finally, the Senator said that he will be pushing for major increases to the National Maritime Heritage Grant Program in this year’s National Defense Authorization Act so that the USS The Sullivans can not only apply, but receive more funding from the program than ever before.
Commissioned in 1943, the USS The Sullivans operated in the Pacific Theater during World War II and is one of four remaining Fletcher-class destroyer left in the world.
The ship is named in honor of the working-class family that lost all five of its sons during the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal.
It was decommissioned in 1965 and donated in 1977 to Buffalo, where it now received designation as a National Historic Landmark and has served as a memorial and museum ship ever since.