By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A familiar face is drumming up support to save the SS United States from the scrap heap.

“I spent my career cultivating winners, but now I must tell you about one that needs our help,” says former Philadelphia Eagles’ head coach Dick Vermeil in a new public service announcement aimed at raising $1 million to save the SS United States — that rusting hulk docked on the Delaware riverfront in South Philadelphia, across from Ikea on Columbus Blvd.

Watch the Dick Vermeil PSA
Susan Gibbs, executive director of the SS United States Conservancy, says Vermeil donated his time for the spot:

“He’s seen the ship rusting away on the Delaware River, as many have.  He is also a friend of Gerry Lenfest, our great benefactor who allowed the Conservancy to purchase the ship.  And he’s just one of many great supporters.”

Gibbs is shopping the PSA to television stations in Philadelphia and other markets across the nation.

The group’s long-term goal is to turn the ship into a floating museum, but first they’re focused on replenishing maintence money that runs out in November.   The Conservancy is holding a June 15th fundraiser at the Independence Seaport Museum to celebrate the ship’s 60th anniversary.

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