GILFORD — The David T. Barrett Marine Patrol headquarters on Lake Winnipesaukee was officially opened and dedicated Tuesday to man who was the director of the Division of Safety with the New Hampshire Department of Safety from 1993 to 2011. Barrett, a town resident, died in 2011.
About 200 people, including members of Barrett's family, joined Gov. Maggie Hassan, N.H. Commissioner of Public Safety John Barthelmes, State Police Colonel Christopher Wagner and Lieutenant Crystal McLain for the opening of the $9.38-million project at the Glendale docks that took two years to plan and build.
"The naming of the beautiful building is a fitting tribute to a man who dedicated his life to serving his country and its citizens," said Barthelmes in his opening remarks.
"He was successful because of his ability to work collaboratively with multiple groups and agencies to promote the lakes and waterways, while protecting the boating public," he said.
The inside of the building contains office space for the ranking officers who work there, two brand-new classrooms for the Marine Patrol to offer its many boating safety classes, a boat storage room with space for evidence, and a counter where people can get boating registrations and information about the Marine Patrol.
Hassan said she was "incredibly proud of all the people who worked across party lines in both branches of government" to get the new facility built.
She said New Hampshire is one of the safest states in the country and its largely because of the men and women like the Marine Patrol who keep our lakes and ocean front safe.
Colonial Christopher Wagner, the new director of Public Safety, recalled the old building on the same site and how it was sinking into the lake. He said the improvements will allow the Marine Patrol, other law enforcement and first responders to better serve the general public.
He said the "Marine Patrol has a very important safety mission both on and off the water. Enforcing boater safety, speed enforcement, accident investigations, water rescues, impaired enforcement, boater education and mooring permitting are some of their responsibilities."
McLain was the project manager who shepherded it from beginning to end and during which time she was promoted from sergeant to lieutenant.
For her efforts and continued excellent work for the Marine Patrol, McLain was given the Distinguished Service Award.
During her brief remarks, she credited Barrett with recognizing the need for a new building and for planting the initial seeds in the minds of the people who could make it happen.
She lauded his promotion of boating safety and his service to his county and the people of New Hampshire.
The David T. Barrett Marine Patrol Headquarters officially opened on Oct. 31 and the storage facility in Belmont and the temporary headquarters in on the old State School property in Laconia are now officially closed.
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