“Warriors of the Storm – History of the U.S. Life-Saving Service” presented by Captain Bob Desh  

The Door County Historical Society will host its monthly dinner meeting and program “Warriors of the Storm – History of the U.S. Life-Saving Service” presented by Captain Bob Desh, U.S. Coast Guard, retired  on Monday, August 22. Few tickets remain for the dinner that will be held at the Lodge at Leathem Smith in Sturgeon Bay beginning at 6:00 pm.


In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries large sections of the United States were sparsely populated. The crew of any ship running aground could expect little if any help. As maritime trade increased, so did the demand for assistance for those wrecked near the shore. This crisis was addressed by the formation of the U.S. Life-Saving Service. Desh is fond of saying, “The regulations say you have to go out, they don’t say anything about coming back.”  The selfless service of the men of the U.S. Life-Saving Service is truly the thing of legend. Bob will explore the history of these “storm warriors” from the fits and starts of the Service’s birth in the 1850s to its merging with the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service to form the Coast Guard in 1915.


A long-time maritime and Coast Guard history buff, Bob serves as a Board of Regents for the Foundation for Coast Guard History’s Board of Regents and on the Museum Exhibit Advisory Panel for the National Coast Guard Museum scheduled for construction on the waterfront in New London, Connecticut.  Bob also chairs the Sturgeon Bay Coast Guard Committee, a standing committee of the Green Bay Council of the Navy League. Bob is the former Executive Director of the Door County Maritime Museum. Prior to joining the museum, Bob served for over 36 years with the United States Coast Guard: aboard five Coast Guard cutters; and diverse shore billets including Commanding Officer of the International Ice Patrol and Director of the Leadership Development Center at the U. S. Coast Guard Academy.


Guests may enjoy either a plated dinner of vegetarian lasagna or a family style dinner of broasted chicken and beef stroganoff, garlic mashed potatoes, cole slaw, fresh vegetables, dessert bars, rolls, butter and coffee. Dinner and program fees are $21 for Society members and the guest fee is $25. The dinner will be held at the Lodge at Leathem Smith, 1640 Memorial Drive, Sturgeon Bay. Limited seating is still available; make your reservation today, by calling (920) 421-2332. Dinner is served promptly at 6:00 pm, so plan to arrive early for check in and seating.


If you would like to attend the program only, the guest fee is $5 and the program time is approximately 6:45. For further information, contact the Society at (920) 421-2332 or Director.DCHistoricalSociety@gmail.com


The Door County Historical Society is a membership organization dedicated to keeping history alive for future generations through the collection, preservation and sharing of the heritage of Door County. The Society operates two interpretive sites: Eagle Bluff Lighthouse in Peninsula State Park and the Heritage Village at Big Creek in Sturgeon Bay.

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