Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Bob Papp provided oral testimony before two U.S. House of Representatives subcommittees yesterday on the Coast Guard’s Fiscal Year 2014 budget request. In the morning, the Commandant testified before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security and in the afternoon testified along with Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Michael P. Leavitt before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Marine Transportation.
The size and impact of Hurricane Sandy will be remembered for years to come and the significance of the storm will not be lost to the Coast Guard civilian volunteers who were part of the Department of Homeland Security’s Surge Capacity Force. Following Hurricane Katrina, a need was recognized for the federal government to be more responsive in the immediate aftermath of a disaster. Thus, the surge capacity force was created.
Hurricane Sandy was a storm of historic proportions making landfall along the densely populated Northeast coast, destroying property and leaving behind unprecedented damage. Coast Guardsmen, so familiar with the role of rescuer, were now part of the population who needed help. Just like the surrounding community, Coast Guard buildings and assets were significantly damaged and hundreds of Coast Guard members and their families were forced to evacuate from their homes and workplace. Members and families needed help in finding adequate housing, filing insurance claims and working to return their lives to normal.
Success is defined differently for everybody, but for one Coast Guardsman – who started his enlistment as a young, untested seaman recruit and is now the commanding officer of a small-boat station – success was constructed by a goal he set for himself when he was only two years into his career.
We’ve reached our 10th video nominee in our search for the 2012 Video of the Year. In our final video, Rescue swimmer Daniel Todd tells us about the daring rescue of 14 sailors from the HMS Bounty during Hurricane Sandy [...]
The head-high sand dunes flanking the road to Coast Guard Station Sandy Hook were a part of the beach prior to Hurricane Sandy. When Coast Guard crews finally returned to the facility, they found damage familiar to many along the coasts of New Jersey and New York; buildings and homes flooded by the storm surge, waterside facilities wrenched out of place and a daunting work list standing between them and their duty to protect American citizens. Petty Officer 1st Class James P. Cashin, a member of the engineering support team, paces between the rumble of a diesel generator and the conversation and echoing bustle of the gutted station.
When Hurricane Sandy made landfall late October in New Jersey, the damage left behind was unprecedented. New inlets were created, the shoreline shifted and entire houses were relocated. Millions were left without power; many became homeless. In the wake of the storm, members from Coast Guard Maritime Safety and Security Team Kings Bay, Ga., deployed to support safety and security efforts due to mandatory evacuations.
Behind every member of the Coast Guard stands a proud parent, sibling, spouse or child. Together they form a strong family, a military family. Alongside their loved ones, family members share the weight of deployments as Coast Guard men and women stand the watch. But they also share the same spirit of service, whether it is to country or community. As a true testament to this service, Coast Guard families came together in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
Just hours after “Superstorm” Sandy had made landfall, Coast Guard Cutter Willow was deployed. Homeported in Newport, R.I., Willow is a 225-foot buoy tender with the ability to perform many of the Coast Guard missions. But it wasn’t icebreaking or enforcing laws the Eastern seaboard needed. It was safety on the waterways.
The search and rescue operation to save the crew of HMS Bounty has already become one of the enduring images of Hurricane Sandy, but for 14 men and women who called Bounty home and the families of the two who have not returned it will be the bravery of the rescue crews who willingly put themselves in harm’s way to save those in peril that will last a lifetime.