USCGC UTE (WMEC 76)
A Partial History Compiled by Carlos Johnson
The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Ute was a Medium Endurance Cutter (WMEC) of the Cherokee Class of cutters. Its hull number was 76. In shorthand ? USCGC Ute (WMEC-76). The Ute was named after the Ute people of Utah and Colorado. Her radio call sign was NBXL.
The Ute?s keel was laid on 27 February 1942 in Alameda, California and commissioned as the USS Ute (AT-76), a fleet tug of the Navajo Class, on 13 December, 1942:
Displacement: 1,589 tons
Beam: 38? 6?
Draft: 14? 3?
The USS Ute served in the Pacific; fighting and working in World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War (1942-1972). She was reclassified as ATF-76 in 1944.
The USS Ute was transferred to the Military Sealift Command on 30 August, 1974 where she continued to serve the Navy until October 1979.
This is just a partial History ? If you have additional significant details of operations and history, please send them to Carlos.
The Ute received 3 battle stars for service in World War II, 2 for service in the Korean War, and 9 for service in Vietnam.
The Ute was transferred to the Coast Guard and commissioned as the USCGC Ute (WMEC-76) in 1980. The Ute?s homeport was the Coast Guard base in Key West Florida. She participated in defense exercises, law enforcement, search and rescue, and migrant interdiction operations in the Caribbean for nearly a decade.
The Ute was diverted to assist with the invasion of Grenada in 1983; however, she was recalled after hours of steaming south. She also participated in Operation Blue Blade in 1984 with the Panamanian military. The Ute fired upon and disabled the fishing vessel Miss Shirley after hours of pursuit. The Honduran crew was arrested, and taken with their boat to Key West where they and their marijuana were transferred to other federal authorities.
The Ute was decommissioned in 1988, and sunk as a target on Coast Guard Day in 1991.