George Bush photo

Proclamation 6504—SPAR Anniversary Week, 1992

November 06, 1992

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

During World War II, recognizing the military's urgent need for personnel and both the ability and the desire of women to contribute to the total Allied effort, the United States Congress passed legislation establishing the Coast Guard Women's Reserve. The Coast Guard Women's Reserve was created as a sister service to the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WACS), Women Accepted for Voluntary Emergency Service (WAVES) in the Naval Reserve, and Women Marines.

The first director of the Coast Guard Women's Reserve, Captain Dorothy C. Stratton, coined its acronym, SPAR, from the Latin and English translations of the Coast Guard motto, Sempter Paratus! (Always Ready!). Women from throughout the United States and from all walks of life were recruited as SPARS, becoming the first women to be trained at a United States service academy, the United States Coast Guard Academy. Throughout the course of the war, they performed admirably as executive officers, division heads, watch officers, coxswains, gunner's mates, and machinist's mates -- to name but a few of their important roles.

Following World War II, SPARS were integrated into the Organized Reserve Training Program. Many served with distinction in highly specialized jobs during the Korean and Vietnam conflicts, and today, a half-century after the founding of the Women's Reserve, Coast Guard women serve in all phases of Coast Guard operations. We note with special admiration and pride the contributions of Coast Guard women during Operations Desert Shield/Desert Storm.

In honor of the dedicated service of women in the United Stats Coast Guard, the Congress, by H.R. 5617, has designated the week of November 17 through November 23, 1992, as "SPAR Anniversary Week" and has requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of that week.

Now, Therefore, I, George Bush, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the week of November 17 through November 23, 1992, as SPAR Anniversary Week. I encourage and Governors of the States and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and officials of other areas subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to provide for the observance of this week. I also invite all Americans to utilize the opportunity to learn more about the history and continuing contributions of women in the United States Coast Guard.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this sixth day of November, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and ninety-two, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and seventeenth.

Signature of George Bush


George Bush, Proclamation 6504—SPAR Anniversary Week, 1992 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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