A rendering shows the final design of the museum, which was approved by the National Coast Guard Museum Association's board in 2019. (National Coast Guard Museum Association)

The National Coast Guard Museum Association has raised more than $56 million for a national museum on the downtown New London waterfront to tell the story of the Coast Guard and has plans to launch a new committee in the spring to help raise remaining funds.

At the same time, construction of the museum, which was supposed to start in earnest early this year, has been pushed back due to two other big projects going on in the area.

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A new memorial in Arlington is being dedicated to the USS Thresher, a submarine which sank in 1963, killing all 129 men on board. It was the worst submarine disaster in U.S. history. (Wikipedia Commons/USERR)

Judy Douglas has waited 56 years for this moment.

Her brother Lt. John Smarz Jr. was one of the 129 men who died when the USS Thresher, the most advanced submarine of its era, sank to the ocean floor during a deep dive test on April 10, 1963, about 220 miles east of Cape Cod. The event remains the worst submarine disaster in U.S. history.

On Thursday, the 79-year-old Douglas, of Shelton, Conn., will gather with other family members of the deceased at Arlington National Cemetery for the unveiling of a memorial in honor of the Thresher crew and the submarine safety program that came afterward, which, Douglas said, she considers part of her brother's legacy. She and about 50 others will be taking a bus down from Norwich organized by the memorial fundraisers, who had raised $60,000 in private donations for the marker.

"Long time coming," Douglas said of the memorial. "I mean it's going to be quite an experience."

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New London — Retired four-star general John Kelly said that as President Donald Trump's chief of staff, he pushed back against the proposal to deploy U.S. troops to the southern border, arguing at the time that active-duty U.S. military personnel typically don't deploy or operate domestically.

"We don't like it," Kelly said in remarks at the Coast Guard Academy on Thursday night. "We see that as someone else's job meaning law enforcement."

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The Virginia-class fast-attack submarine USS California is photographed during sea trials in the Atlantic Ocean, June 30, 2011. (U.S. Navy/Chris Oxley)

GROTON, Conn. -- Defense Secretary Mark Esper, a month into the job, toured Electric Boat on Tuesday, including a walkthrough of the Navy's newest attack submarine, USS South Dakota, which is undergoing a major upgrade to make the already stealthy submarine even quieter in response to continued advancement by China and Russia in their undersea fleets.

Esper's focus of late has been on China, which is increasingly staking a claim in the Indo-Pacific region, and which recently tested multiple anti-ship ballistic missiles. He told a crowd at the Naval War College in Newport earlier in the day that the Pentagon is looking at ways to increase its presence in the region.

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U.S. Coast Guard Academy Class of 2016 graduates celebrate during their commencement ceremony in New London, Conn., May 18, 2016. (U.S. Coast Guard/Petty Officer 2nd Class Cory J. Mendenhall)

The Coast Guard Academy, which is involved in the most comprehensive concussion study to date, is preparing to track cadets after they leave the academy to examine the impact a concussion can have on a person's brain over time.

The study, launched in 2014 by the NCAA and the Department of Defense, initially looked at the impacts from concussions or repeated head injuries in the hours, days and weeks after the injury, and compared those to assessments done beforehand. Now, it is expanding the study to look at potential cumulative effects.

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A video screen grab shows the USS South Dakota (SSN 790) at Naval Submarine Base New London in Groton, Conn., on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019, during it's commissioning ceremony. The ship is the Navy's newest fast attack submarine. (U.S. Navy video)

Ninety-two-year-old World War II veteran Richard "Dick" Hackley handed over the watch Saturday to Lt. Ben McFarland, a sailor assigned to the Navy's newest submarine.

Hackley served as a radar operator on the USS South Dakota (BB 57), among the most decorated battleships of the war.

McFarland, known as a plank owner, is among the first to serve on the fast-attack submarine USS South Dakota (SSN 790), which was commissioned at the Naval Submarine Base before a crowd of about 1,400 people. Another 800 watched on a screen from nearby Dealey Center on base.

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