Posted 28 February 2012 - 08:06 PM
Am unsure of a date for the patch but it's of the American Red Cross Lifesaving Corps - the following extracted from their website
"Since 1911/1912 (it’s a little hazy which year the volunteers actually began patrolling Jacksonville Beach) the men and women of the American Red Cross Volunteer Life Saving Corps have stood watch over Jacksonville’s beaches to protect the lives of residents and visitors who come throughout the year to enjoy our pristine shores and abundant sunshine. For the vast majority of these visitors, their seaside weekends and holidays stir pleasant memories of families and friends together, beach picnics and splashing in the waves under a warm Florida sun. Little attention was likely paid to the sentinels on the beach towers who, for almost a century, have stood the watch to ensure the safety and the survival of those who come to Jacksonville’s shores yet they are owed a debt that can never be fully repaid.
Since the summer of 1912, when a dozen volunteers formed the United States Volunteer Life Saving Corps at what was then called Pablo Beach, Florida, an uninterrupted chain of men and women have stepped forward to wear the distinctive uniform of “The Corps”. In 1914, the seventeen charter members of the Corps became part of the American Red Cross’s national water safety program as the American Red Cross Volunteer Life Saving Corps, Coast Guard Division #1. Today, their volunteer ranks include more than 120 active members and hundreds of alumni of the Corps who proudly bear the title of Retired Surfman.
Few if any volunteer organizations can point to the documented record of courage, valor and lifesaving service that is the rich heritage of the American Red Cross Volunteer Life Saving Corps. In its 95 years of service, members of the Corps have recorded 1,430 lifesaving rescues, 1,753 assists to swimmers in distress, and more than 25,000 first aid cases ranging from jellyfish stings to broken limbs. This extraordinary record of selfless service to the community has been accomplished through almost 1,300,000 hours of volunteer service by the 4,000 members and alumni of the Volunteer Life Saving Corps. Today, they continue to build on that tradition as they stand watch over our beaches or as they apply the life skills they learned within the Corps as servant leaders of our community and our nation."