The U.S.S. Cod hosted approximately 200 dignitaries from The Netherlands and United States, naval enthusiasts and military friends and families today to mark the 70th anniversary of a Dutch submarine's daring World War II rescue.
The celebration of the rescue is supported by AkzoNobel as part of its Human Cities initiative. The aim of the initiative is to improve, energize and regenerate urban communities across the world, and has a particular focus on the preservation of important local heritage sites and landmarks.
"The U.S.S. Cod's rescue of the 55 sailors on Dutch submarine 0-19 was a remarkable act of heroism," said Toby Oothoudt, an American of Dutch ancestry whose father was a sailor aboard a U.S. submarine lost in World War II. Oothoudt is vice president and trustee of the non-profit Cleveland Coordinating Committee for Cod, Inc., which maintains the Cod at its docked location on the Cleveland lakefront. "This story is as compelling today as it was back in 1945 and is a reminder of the friendship that exists between the United States and The Netherlands."
In addition to sponsoring the anniversary weekend activities, AkzoNobel is partnering with the Cod coordinating committee to promote the Cod's remarkable history and the enduring friendship between the U.S. and The Netherlands.
"AkzoNobel is very proud to support this celebration of naval heroism and international cooperation," said Johan Landfors, President of AkzoNobel North America. "Under our Human Cities Initiative, we believe heritage needs to be embraced, celebrated and protected. As a Dutch company with a significant presence in North America and Northeast Ohio, our support of the Cod a National Historic Landmark is indicative of our commitment to preserving heritage in cities around the world."
North America is AkzoNobel's largest market for its performance coatings and specialty chemicals. AkzoNobel's Marine Coatings business has pioneered the development of market-leading coatings for the shipping industry for over 130 years.
"Often the friendship between two countries is best symbolized by extraordinary events that show the endurance of that relationship," said Klaas van der Tempel, Consul General for the Kingdom of the Netherlands, who attended the ceremony. "One of these events in the long standing U.S.-Netherlands relationship is the unique rescue of the crew of Dutch submarine O-19 by the U.S. submarine Cod in 1945, the first ever submarine-to-submarine rescue in history. The grand commemoration of that rescue in Cleveland 70 years later stands out as another symbol of our strong bonds and our common beliefs."
Paul Farace, president and curator for the Committee for Cod, said, "Cleveland is privileged to have the Cod anchored in Lake Erie. We who work to preserve this submarine as a realistically restored, publicly accessible memorial are grateful for AkzoNobel's support of our mission and this celebration."
For more information about AkzoNobel's partnership with U.S.S. Cod and information on the rescue of Dutch submarine 0-19, please visit www.akzonobel.com/humancities. Learn more about the event and join the related conversation by following USSCod and HumanCities on Twitter.
AkzoNobel is a leading global paints and coatings company and a major producer of specialty chemicals. Calling on centuries of expertise, we supply industries and consumers worldwide with innovative products and sustainable technologies designed to meet the growing demands of our fast-changing planet. Headquartered in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, we have approximately 46,000 people in around 80 countries, while our portfolio includes well-known brands such as Dulux, Sikkens, International, Interpon and Eka. Consistently ranked as one of the leaders in the area of sustainability, we are committed to making life more liveable and our cities more human.
About U.S.S. Cod
U.S.S. Cod had seven successful WWII war patrols and the rescue of the crew of the Dutch submarine O-19 to her credit. The Cod returned to duty in 1951 to participate in Cold War training exercises in the Atlantic and in 1959 Cod became a training vessel in Cleveland. After she was stricken by the Navy in 1971, a handful of Clevelanders formed a non-profit corporation to preserve her as a memorial on the city's lakefront. In January 1976, the Navy gave guardianship of the submarine to the group and Cod began her career as a civilian-managed memorial. In 1986, Cod was declared a National Historic Landmark. Today, open to the public, Cod is recognized as one of the finest restored submarines in the world and is the only U.S. submarine that both retains her WW II configuration and has not been modified for public access. For more information, go to http://www.usscod.org/.
Sandy Moran, +1-440-297-5874
Head of Communications, North America