UNITED SEAMEN'S SERVICE: United Seamen's Service International Centers & AOTOS

(2) USS Success Stories

USS Centers – Sports, Fitness & Recreation

1. USS recognizes the importance of both physical and mental fitness to the seafaring way of life. A fit seafarer is able to withstand the rigors of life at sea, avoid illness and stay focused and alert which helps prevent shipboard accidents.

Participation in sports, athletics and recreational activities is the key to maintaining good health. USS is proactive in fostering the participation of seafarers in activities which will promote both physical and mental fitness as well as relaxation and enjoyment, and USS centers around the world offer a wide variety of activities to this end.

Patrons of USS Bremerhaven look forward to the coming of spring when the horseshoe pitch opens. Friendly competition between seafarers and local residents is a great way to stretch the muscles and meet new friends. USS Casablanca hosts regular billiard competitions and seafarers, many of whom shoot a fair stick, are always in demand to join the local teams. USS Diego Garcia sponsors seafaring teams in softball and golf that have historically been strong contenders in the island leagues.

The annual International Seafarers’ Sports Week was held from July 21st through July 23rd 2015, sponsored by the Port of Yokohama Promotion Association of the Yokohama Port and Harbor Bureau has been held annually since 1968 to promote seafarers’ welfare and international exchange. This year’s event had at least 75 participants and over 125 games played during the week. USS Yokohama helped organize the competitions in conjunction with All Japan Seamen’s Union and Mission to Seafarers. Events were held at the USS Center.

USS centers around the world continue to carry out the agency’s commitment to the welfare of seafarers by offering a wide variety of athletic and recreational activities in order to promote the mental and physical fitness of the international seagoing workforce.

Admiral Of The Ocean Sea - AOTOS

2. Recognized as the most prestigious award in the maritime industry, the Admiral Of The Ocean Sea Award has been presented annually by United Seamen's Service for the past forty-six years. The AOTOS Award is given in recognition of individuals and organizations who have shown outstanding support for American seafarers and the maritime industry of the United States.

In 2015, the Admiral Of The Ocean Sea honors were awarded to three very distinguished gentlemen: Anthony A. Chiarello, President and CEO of TOTE; Matthew J. Cox, President/CEO of Matson; and James C. McKenna, President and CEO of Pacific Maritime Association.
The honorees are three members of the maritime industry who in their respective capacities have been guiding the way to keep the American-flag merchant marine on the high seas. In addition, USS presented a special remembrance in honor of the 28 American crew members of the El Faro and five Polish nationals who perished at sea on October 1, 2015 during Hurricane Joaquin.

The AOTOS event was held on November 13, 2015 in the Metropolitan Ballroom of the Sheraton New York Times Square Hotel. The event was very well attended with nearly one thousand dignitaries and prominent members of the transportation industry turning out to pay tribute to the honorees.

A much anticipated segment of the AOTOS event is the Honored Seafarer awards. These awards honor mariners of vessels who, during the previous year, had exhibited exceptional bravery, superb seamanship and devotion to duty while engaged in rescue operations at sea. The Honorable Paul N. Jaenichen, Maritime Administrator, U.S. Maritime Administration was joined by Rear Admiral T.K. Shannon, Commander, USN, in presenting this year’s Mariners’ plaques and rosettes to the well deserving mariners.