Mobile’s official Mardi Gras ships announced

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Mobile’s official Mardi Gras ships will be open for public tours. Read the following press release for details:

Mobile, Ala. –February 19, 2020.  The Navy League of Mobile, the Alabama State Port Authority and GulfQuest Maritime Museum of the Gulf of Mexico will host this year’s Mardi Gras Ships, the USS MCFAUL (DDG 74) and the USCG CUTTER GANNET.  The USS MCFAUL will berth at the Alabama State Port Authority’s Pier 2, located on Water Street, downtown, Mobile, Ala.  The USCG CUTTER GANNET will berth at GulfQuest located on South Water Street, downtown Mobile, Ala. 

The USS MCFAUL, whose motto is “Courage Honor Sacrifice”, should begin transiting the Mobile Ship Channel shortly after daybreak the morning of February 21, 2020, with an anticipated arrival at Pier 2 sometime around 11:00 am. CST.  Members of the media are invited to cover the Navy ship’s welcoming festivities and should arrive early to photograph/record vessel approach to the dock.  The U.S. Navy will host a press forum with the Commanding Officer, the Executive Officer and the Command Chief immediately following the welcoming ceremony.  Crew hailing from the region will also be available on the forecastle deck of the ship. 

The USS MCFAUL (DDG 74) is the 24th Arleigh Burke-class destroyer in the United States Navy. The ship was named for Engineman Chief Petty Officer Donald L. McFaul (1957–1989), a member of SEAL Team ONE where he served three deployments in support of Special Operations out of Subic Bay, Philippines.  Chief McFaul returned to civilian life in 1985, and then returned to the Special Warfare Community assigned to SEAL Team FOUR.  Chief McFaul deployed to both the Persian Gulf and to Panama.  As the Platoon Chief of Gulf Platoon, he gave his life during combat on December 18, 1989.  Chief McFaul was a recipient Navy Achievement Medal with Gold Star, Navy Unit Citation, and Good Conduct Medal with Bronze Star. He was posthumously awarded the “Purple Heart” and the “Navy Cross”.  The ship’s leadership includes Commander Rusty J. Williams, as her Commanding Officer, Commander Bobby J. Rowdan, as her Executive Officer, and Command Master Chief, Jason Kutsch, as her Command Master Chief.

Learn more at

The USCGC GANNET will arrive at 9:00 am, CST, February 24, 2020, at the GulfQuest Maritime Museum.  The Cutter is the 34th Marine Protector-class Coastal Patrol Boat in the United States Coast Guard, and is currently homeported in Mobile, Ala. GANNET’s primary missions include protecting domestic fisheries in the US Territorial Seas and Exclusive Economic Zones, Search and Rescue, and Ports, Waterways, and Coastal Security. The Cutter’s leadership includes Lieutenant Junior Grade Michael Palomba, as her Commanding Officer, Chief Boatswain’s Mate Francis Kinsey, as her Executive Officer, and Chief Machinery Technician John Smith, as her Command Chief.  Learn more about Sector Mobile at

USS MCFAUL (DDG 74) Welcome Ceremony and Public Tours Info

§  Welcome Ceremony:  11:00 am, CST, Friday, February 21, 2020. Alabama State Port Authority, Pier 2.  Gates open at 9:30 am (CST).

§  Public Tours:  February 22-25, 2020 between the hours of 8:30 am – 11:00 am and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm (CST) Pier 2 Terminal, downtown Mobile, Ala.

§  The gate entrance is located on the north side of the Mobile Convention Center on Water Street, Downtown Mobile, Ala.

§  The Public is welcome, but all visitors are required to wear closed toe/heel shoes and carry valid identification.  All guests will undergo security screening prior to entry to the facility. 

USCGC GANNET Public Tours Info

§  GANNET will moor at 9:00 am (CST) on February 24, 2020 at the GulfQuest Maritime Museum, 155 S Water Street, in downtown Mobile, Ala.

§  Public Tours: February 24 between the hours of 11:00 am and 3:00 pm (CST), and February 25-26 between the hours of 10:00 am and 3:00 pm (CST).

§  The Public is welcome, but all visitors are required to wear closed toe/heel shoes and carry valid identification. 

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