“This is where the Coast Guard’s culture begins,” said Capt. Todd Prestidge. “At the training center, we embody the standard. We teach the standard. And we keep that standard safe for generations to come.” That is more than just a tag line for Prestidge. It is a mission statement.
Chief Petty Officer Barry Hollenbeck had just reported to Coast Guard Sector New York in the summer of 2010 to serve as a team leader in the safety and security operations branch when the call came in. Hollenbeck was to report to Hopedale, La., in support of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill response to lead the decontamination assessment team at the Hopedale Incident Command Post. Hollenbeck had not even had a chance to unpack from his family’s recent move from Virginia, and he left his wife, Sine, and their two children in a sea of boxes to answer the call.
Just two months after graduating basic training in 1999, then Seaman Apprentice Sergio Cosby found himself aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Northland from Portsmouth, Va., involved in a two-ton drug bust. Fast forward almost 14 years, and Petty Officer 1st Class Cosby had the opportunity to pass his experiences on to the next generation of Coast Guardsmen. Cosby wrote a running, or double-time, cadence entitled “Turn It Up!,” which was selected as one of the Top 5 Coast Guard Cadences of 2013. Each year Coast Guard Training Center Cape May, the service’s only enlisted basic training facility, solicits original marching cadences from across the service.