Commentary: Rescuing the 1898 Oregon Inlet United States Life-Saving Service Station No.16… PART I

Oregon Inlet Station. Photo by Dawn F. Taylor Photography By James D. “Keeper James” Charlet © 2024 Sitting majestically, solitarily, invitingly – but alone – as millions of travelers land upon the famous Hatteras Island by crossing the new Marc Basnight Bridge, is a beautiful but mysteriously abandoned building. It is, (it was), the Oregon Inlet United States Life-Saving Service Station. It is in serious trouble. It needs to be saved, to be rescued – just as it spent its life doing for others. To add to the confusion, it is very often mistaken for and misidentified as the Pea Island station. It needs much more than just ‘rescuing’ – it requires the “4R’s: R escue- R enovate- R ejuvenate- R epurpose! I have a comprehensive and detailed sensible and workable plan that I have been developing since 2015. The plan starts with a new 501(c)(3) nonprofit I have created named the “Outer Banks Coast Guard History Preservation Group.” I chose this name for a broader purpose: North Carolina has a critical U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) presence. Our sounds and ocean beaches house 58 United States Coast Guard sites – 18 from the past and 40 presently. Every day, our Coast Guard is saving our fishermen and recreational mariners, keeping our boats safe through requirements and inspections, seizing illegal drugs, arresting maritime criminals, and maintaining thousands of navigational aids among their eleven missions. Surely, we can show our appreciation by preserving their important history as a crucial contribution to the legacy of Dare County and the great state of North Carolina. The new nonprofit’s first, critical, and immediate mission is the 1898 Oregon Inlet Life-Saving Station (LSS) No. 16. After that, we will address more Outer Banks projects so that millions more can also learn about the incredible forgotten […]

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