Coast Guardsmen William Cashman, Edward Stark and Frank Griswold died in a raging gale after rescuing passengers and crew from a passenger liner that ran aground off Manomet Point, Mass. on a nasty March day in 1928.
This site is meant to honor those three men who died, along with the brave civilians who set out from shore to try and rescue eight Coast Guardsmen who were tossed into the churning, deathly cold sea a quarter-mile from shore. The eight were returning in a surfboat after assisting the SS Robert E. Lee, which had gone aground on the treacherous Mary Ann Rocks about a mile off the Point, with 276 passengers and crew aboard, the night before.
NEW! 3.11.18 Gallery of dramatic on-scene photos taken by Boston Herald-Traveler photographer Leslie Jones. VIEW THEM HERE.
A few months after their sacrifice, the three heroic guardsmen were honored by local residents, who paid for a stone memorial on Manomet Point, overlooking the rocks upon which the Lee grounded.
The memorial still stands, but has seen better days. There have been efforts to help spruce up the marker and the surrounding grounds. Today, erosion of the nearby bluff might eventually threaten the memorial and it would need to be relocated.
A number of years ago, a crew of Coast Guardsmen led by Aaron Wallace spent a raw, drizzly Saturday morning raking and trimming the grass, edging and adding stone around the monument; power-washing the monument and its nearby fence; and adding bronze Coast Guard medallions with flags.
Longtime Manomet loberstman and businessman Frank Collins, who lives nearby and owns the adjacent Lobster Pound and property, has been providing upkeep of the area.
Ultimately, we’d like to find a permanent solution to caring for (and possibly even improving) the memorial, and perhaps to have Cashman, Stark and Griswold officially honored by the government and/or military as heroes.
Please visit the other sections of the site for some interesting history, historic and modern-day pictures, and a few more insights into why we’re doing this.
Video overview of the memorial and surrounding area