Now former NFL coach and broadcaster Dick Vermeil is lending a hand to America’s flagship, the SS United States in a new public service campaign. Vermeil stars in a new public service announcement which will be distributed to television stations in connection with the 60th anniversary of the launch of the world’s fastest ocean liner will help raise awareness about the ship’s history and drive interest in the efforts to restore and repurpose her.
Built to be both luxury superliner and Cold War weapon, America’s flagship, the SS United States was the fastest and safest ocean liner ever built.
Larger than the Titanic and faster than the Queen Mary, the United States is one of the last remaining of the great 20th century ocean liners and a symbol of American post-war innovation.
Berthed in Philadelphia for more than 15 years awaiting revitalization, the ship still holds the transatlantic speed record.
“This ship symbolizes the very best of America. The SS United States is a true American champion and she deserves our help,” states Vermeil who makes a personal appeal to save the ship in the PSA.
“It is an honor to be part of this noble cause and so that this great American achievement can be restored and celebrated for generations to come.”
“We are so grateful to Coach Vermeil for supporting our efforts to save the United States,” says Susan Gibbs, Executive Director of the SS United States Conservancy. “He has a genuine passion for this patriotic cause. We hope that his endorsement of our efforts to save the United States will inspire and galvanize others throughout led a hand to our efforts to restore and repurpose this extraordinary ship.” The Conservancy hopes to air the public service announcement initially in the Philadelphia, New York and St Louis markets.
Purchased by the Conservancy in 2011 in an attempt to save the historic vessel from the scrap yard, the ship awaits transformation into a museum and mix-use waterfront destination in a major port city. The Conservancy is currently raising funds to maintain the ship and begin the restoration process. The group is also advancing an aggressive search for developers interested in using some of the vessel’s more than 650,000 square feet of usable space for a variety of commercial purposes.