The Valley Fire, which affected Lake, Napa and Sonoma counties in Northern California, burned more than 76,000 acres and destroyed nearly 2,000 structures throughout the region from Sept. 12 to Oct. 15, 2015, when it became 100 percent contained. The disaster, which forced more than 3,000 people to be immediately evacuated from the region, was ranked as the third worst fire in California history. Along with area firefighters and emergency medical staff, an additional force answered the call for help as the fire raged on – the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.
Michelle Thornton, who currently serves as the Coast Guard Auxiliary district captain for Hampton Roads and as a civilian employee for the Coast Guard, has become one of the anchors; her story typifies the contribution and dedication of both Coast Guard auxiliarists and civilians.
“What greater mission is there than saving lives?” This is exactly the thought Auxiliarist Jacob Thayer has when he thinks about the Coast Guard and why he decided to become a member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary.
If you’re a boater, you’ve probably encountered the Coast Guard Auxiliary. Whether patrolling our Nation’s waterways to ensure safety and security or offering free vessel safety checks to recreational boaters, the Coast Guard Auxiliary serves a crucial role for the Coast Guard.
Now that you know all about life jackets, safety equipment, and why float plans are so vital to you and your passengers, here is some great U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and State boating resources that you need to know.
Just as lake effect snow and northern Michigan are one, so are U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary aviation and Jim Johnson. A member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary since 2001, Mr. Johnson currently serves as the assistant 9th District staff officer for aviation and the auxiliary air coordinator for the 9th District central region.
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.
“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.”
In the world of emergency response, one can accurately infer that strong working relationships among all involved parties are crucial to mission success. The Coast Guard, being one of the nation’s top emergency response organizations, works with local agencies throughout the country every day in search and rescue operations, law enforcement cases and even environmental protection missions to ensure the preservation of lives, protection of property and national security, and the conservation of ecosystems and endangered species.
One man got Tuesdays with Morrie, but at Station Fire Island the entire crew is fortunate enough to get Wednesdays with Charles Baack. Since 1976 Charles W. Baack has stood faithful to Station Fire Island as a communications watchstander and break-in trainer. What’s more amazing than that, is he is 97 years young and remains as sharp as a whip!