This summer Stuart Bangs, an Edgartown native, was in command of the first Coast Guard boat to respond to the passenger vessel Majesty when the charter boat with 152 persons aboard went aground in Boston Harbor. According to a press release, with assistance from several state and local maritime agencies, all passengers and crew were safely removed from the vessel that was stricken off George’s Island.
Mr. Bangs comes from a long line of maritime lifesavers. His paternal cousin, Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer Donald Bangs, took part in the legendary rescue of dozens of crewmembers from two sinking tankers, the Pendleton and the Fort Mercer, that occurred off the coast of Chatham during a blizzard in February 1952. That rescue was the focus of a best-selling book and a recently released motion picture, “The Finest Hours.” Other members of the Bangs family served in the Coast Guard in both World War I and World War II, and took part in numerous wartime maritime operations.