It was noon formation aboard Coast Guard Cutter Mohawk. The crew stood at attention as the ship’s bell rang eight times, signifying the end of watch and the passing of a sailor. On that day, as the crew mustered, they were honoring the late Sen. Frank R. Lautenberg. Lautenberg’s connection with the ship and its crew started in 1989 when his wife, Bonnie, and several members of his family christened the newly commissioned medium-endurance Cutter Mohawk in Rhode Island.
From our maritime borders to the U.S Exclusive Economic Zone to our ports and inland waterways, the men and women of the Coast Guard are sentinels in preventing threats from reaching the United States. In the fight to secure the homeland, Coast Guard units often deploy overseas. On this leading edge to strengthen global capacities in fighting international drug trafficking and crime is Chief Petty Officer Shawn Vaupel.
Strengthening our partnerships is more important than ever before. Our nation is making difficult but necessary decisions to put our fiscal house in order and we may be asked to do less with less, or at least do the same work with different means. But the need for maritime governance continues in order to achieve our shared goals of safe transportation, clean seas, and secure and efficient movement of commerce. Working as partners we will navigate “uncertain and stormy seas” together.
Three small parts made one big difference for the crew of GC 109 Orion, a Dominican Republic patrol boat that received the critical components fabricated by a damage controlman aboard U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Oak in Saint Lucia during Tradewinds 2013. The replacement parts were a gift, custom-tailored for Orion by Petty Officer 3rd Class Marilyn A. Brammer, a damage controlman from Atwater, Calif. Brammer called upon nearly four years of training and experience to build these parts – three stainless steel, seawater strainers for Orion’s engine cooling system.
During Combined Joint Logistics Over-the-Shore Exercise, the Wheeler simulated providing fuel for the more than 1,200 personnel involved in the exercise by pumping water through the pipeline to large bladders on shore. These bladders would then be used to fuel military vehicles and equipment in a real-world scenario.
Port Security Unit 311 is an expeditionary unit responsible for providing port security in support of military or humanitarian operations worldwide, ready to deploy within 96 hours of notification and establishing sustained operations within 24 hours. The unit deploys on the frontlines of global operations but in order to get there they need support; that support is led by Chief Petty Officer Stepheni Norton.
With air temperatures hovering around freezing every night, steaming hot showers were a welcomed luxury for more than 1,200 deployed Coast Guard, Army, Navy, Marine and Air Force personnel at Camp Baldwin, especially once the camp was transformed into a giant mud pit after steady rain showers drenched the clay grounds during the day. Camp Baldwin, a large-scale, temporary military camp built in the middle of a Korean Marine base in Pohang, South Korea.
It was a journey that would take more than five weeks, six 32-foot security boats, two pick-up trucks, six boat trailers and 15 five-ton storage containers. This journey included traveling more than 5,000 miles across the Pacific Ocean from Everett, Wash., to Pohang, South Korea. Coast Guard port security units 311, 312 and 313 mobilized 80 tons of gear and more than 100 personnel to participate in one of the largest, international military exercises on the Korean peninsula, Combined Joint Logistics Over the Shore Exercise.
The Coast Guard deploys worldwide in service to our nation. Working with partner nations not only strengthens our ranks but also promotes camaraderie between forces of different countries. Lt. Sean Jehu has been deployed to the United Kingdom to learn from, and fly with, the British Royal Navy for this exact reason.
While on a law enforcement patrol in the western Caribbean Sea Gallatin’s crew seized 2,200 pounds of cocaine worth an estimated value of $27 million. The crew of Gallatin located a 68-foot fishing vessel in the western Caribbean Sea, April 18, 2013, and launched their response boat. The response boat crew boarded the vessel, locating the cocaine and detaining three suspected smugglers.