Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy led a contingent of dignitaries Friday at the official groundbreaking ceremony for the National Coast Guard Museum along the waterfront in New London, Conn.
Construction of the museum, a four-story, 54,000-square-foot structure, is expected to begin later this year.
Fundraising for the $80 million project is ongoing, but the state has already committed $20 million and there is hope that the federal government will match it.
Adm. Robert J. Papp, commandant of the Coast Guard, said the museum will serve not only to inspire future members of the Coast Guard, but also memorialize the service members of the past.
"To be able to bring this museum to fruition and have a small part played in it is just a great honor for me," Papp told NBC 30 News.