It’s nearly Friday! Getting ready to go kick back on the boat this weekend? Relax, unwind, invite some friends and have some beers, right? Think twice before you get behind the wheel of a boat while intoxicated, though.
During the Rim of the Pacific Exercise 2014, Coast Guard Cutter Waesche’s crewmembers worked hand-in-hand with Australia, Brunei, China, France, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, and the U.S. Navy in a multitude of exercises ranging from maritime interdiction, search and rescue and counter-piracy to tactical maneuvering, fueling and replenishments at sea, and a live-fire gunnery exercise.
Listening to the helicopter’s rotor blades slice through the night sky while watching his feet dangle above the turbulent water, the words “never quit,” repeated over and over in his head. Never quit – words Seaman Derrian Duryea repeated to himself before high school swim meets and now words he lives by as a Coast Guardsman.
This week, “Honor, Respect and Devotion to Duty” has the unique pleasure of highlighting the great work of Seaman Stephanie O’Sullivan and her husband Petty Officer 1st Class Brain O’Sullivan.
“Our goal was to get them out of the channel as fast as possible. There was no way the cargo ship would have seen them. The ship was approaching at about 15-20 knots. We only had about 15 minutes to get them out of the channel before being hit.”
“Keep an eye on your kids! You wouldn’t let your kid run around unattended in a mall parking lot, and the waters at the beach can be just as dangerous.”
But today – while seemingly familiar in sight and sound – was far from typical. Today marks 224 years of exceptional service by the men and women of America’s Coast Guard. It was Aug. 4, 1790, when President George Washington signed an act bringing to life ten cutters “to be employed for the protection of the revenue.” Alexander Hamilton first conceptualized these cutters as a viable asset for the country; at the time, he wrote, “a few armed vessels, judiciously stationed at the entrances of our ports, might at a small expense be made useful sentinels of the laws.”
Today the Coast Guard celebrates 224 years of service to the nation. As we celebrate our anniversary, we also share our birthday with the commander in chief, President Barack Obama. We wish President Obama a happy 53rd birthday and share with you his birthday letter to the Coast Guard as we celebrate more than two centuries of honor, respect and devotion to duty.
Social media has changed the way we connect with others, engage in conversations or share our mutual interests. Social media is part of our daily lives. That means social media is part of telling the Coast Guard’s story.
“We spend a lot of time saying, ‘Wouldn’t it be nice if someone did something?’” said Appel. “Saying is not acting. You could be that someone. You could say, ‘I should do something.’”