Marine Society honours Merrell at annual dinner

The Marine Society of the City of New York has handed its annual honour to the top boss of General Dynamics' shipping subsidiary, American Overseas Marine.

Thomas Merrell, president of the US shipowner and operator, received the award during a recent dinner at the New York Marriott Downtown Hotel.

Raymond Burke, a partner at New York law firm Burke & Parsons, was also honoured with the group's lifetime achievement award, while the distinguished service award went to the Organization of Black Maritime Graduates.

Captain Jake O'Boyle, master of the 4,660-teu Maersk Kentucky (built 1999), received the year's lifesaving award for the rescue of 11 Pakistani fishermen, who had been adrift for 10 days, in June 2016.

The dinner was the 247th annual event for the society. The organisation began during colonial times and was chartered by England's King George III in 1770, though its early members included Revolutionary War leaders George Washington, Alexander Hamilton and Captain John Paul Jones.

Membership of the society is open to masters, chief mates, pilots, chief engineers, first engineers and those of similar ranks in the US Navy and Coast Guard.