The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Active, a 210-foot medium endurance Reliance-class cutter homeported in Port Angeles, Wash., interdicts more than 1 ton of cocaine from four suspected drug smugglers during a counter-narcotics patrol in the eastern Pacific Ocean, Friday, May 18, 2018. Cutters like Active routinely conduct operations from South America to the Bering Sea to perform defense operations, alien migrant interdiction, domestic fisheries protection, search-and-rescue, counter-narcotics and other Coast Guard missions at great distances from shore keeping threats far from the U.S. mainland. U.S. Coast Guard Photos by Petty Officer 1st Class Michael De Nyse.

Damage control, not damage repair – keeping an aging cutter active

Petty Officer 1st Class Victor Arcelay, a damage controlman and one of the 75 crew members aboard Active, has the daunting task of keeping the 52-year-old Coast Guard Cutter Active, well — active. The Active is currently operating well beyond its 30-year design service life. The Medium Endurance Cutter class is considered the backbone of the Coast Guard’s fleet; however, engineering challenges have plagued the operations of these vessels in recent years.


Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: DC3 Ryan Wenzel

Whether you need something fixed, inspected or its operation explained, Petty Officer 3rd Class Wenzel is your one-stop shop for answers and advice with a friendly smile. “I like helping people and training people,” said Wenzel. “Everybody comes to me when they have a question about the boat.”


Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: DC1 Robert Somers

Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: DC1 Robert Somers

“I can relate to these guys on a personal level, dealing with mild Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, depression and anxiety,” Somers said. “VETSports allows me to get together with brothers of the military who have been through traumatic experiences.”


Coast Guard Cutter Eagle

School of the ship

Cadets face a multitude of challenges when stepping aboard Eagle. Shipboard living conditions are tight, and all cadets work, stand watches and attend training nearly 16 or more hours a day, sometimes while feeling seasick. Other cadets faced overcoming their fears of climbing 147-feet high into the rigging.


DC3 Brammer

There to fix it

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.