Maritime resiliency

For three days, Coast Guard Cutter Vigorous’ crew collaborated with the Royal Bahamas Defense Force – the armed service and coast guard component of The Bahamas. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

For three days, Coast Guard Cutter Vigorous’ crew collaborated with the Royal Bahamas Defense Force – the armed service and coast guard component of The Bahamas. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Written by Senior Chief Petty Officer Sarah Foster and Petty Officer 2nd Class Wes Shinn.

With every deployment, the Coast Guard comes with friendship, partnership and open hearts.

Even outside of our nation’s domestic borders and into the international community, the Coast Guard permanently deploys and serves through maritime safety education and outreach, volunteerism and collaboration.

Being involved within the fabric of maritime communities of coastal nations, Coast Guard deployments demonstrate the commitment of maritime stewardship.

Coast Guard Cutter Vigorous is a multi-mission, 210-foot medium endurance cutter based out of Cape May, N.J. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Coast Guard Cutter Vigorous is a multi-mission, 210-foot medium endurance cutter based out of Cape May, N.J. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

The crew aboard Coast Guard Cutter Vigorous, a multi-mission 210-foot medium endurance cutter based out of Cape May, N.J., recently exemplified the spirit of maritime stewardship and partnership during their recent port call to the Bahamas.

For three days, the Coast Guard crew collaborated with the Royal Bahamas Defense Force – the armed service and coast guard component of The Bahamas known as RBDF – for community outreach and exercise planning.

Fifteen crewmembers from the Vigorous partnered with 15 marines from the RBDF to teach boating safety and civic responsibility to approximately 300 students at the Woodcock Primary School.

“Both the Coast Guard and the RBDF had an informal discussion about Coast Guard missions, agency partnerships and why they chose to serve their country,” said Ensign Caitlin Force. “The discussion also focused on doing the right thing, serving the community, making good decisions and the rewards that come with serving.”

In interacting with the Coast Guard and RBDF, the Rangers were inspired to look up to positive role models.

“It was a great experience working with the kids and representing a positive image to them,” said Seaman Deimonte Guinn. “It’s always good to show young children they have options for their future.”

After the school visit, Vigorous hosted U.S. Embassy officials and Bahamian partners to a joint operational planning session followed by a reception.

Dignitaries attending the event included U.S. Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission John Armstrong, Commodore Roderick Bowe of the RBDF and his staff officers, Bahamas Air Sea Rescue Association President Chris Lloyd, Operations Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands, U.S. Coast Guard liaison Cmdr. Mark Driver and Lt. Cmdr. Doug Jannusch from the U.S. Embassy of The Bahamas.Cutter crest

“This was a great opportunity to tour the ship, discuss common maritime challenges and build relationships with our agency counterparts that is essential for both our mission readiness and operational success,” said Cmdr. Terry Johns, commanding officer of Vigorous. “The range of our joint missions, responsibilities and operations demand resourcefulness and decisiveness through shared partnership, knowledge and expertise.”

By partnering with the RBDF, the Coast Guard provides its partners and local communities with global capabilities that enable greater safety, security and economic success.

“It was a great experience for all parties involved,” said Lt. j.g. David Rehfuss. “RBDF members were very receptive to our techniques and we were able to gain valuable local lessons learned from their stories and experiences.”

True to the nature of supporting community programs and leveraging international partnerships, Vigorous and its crew continues the Coast Guard legacy of keeping maritime communities safe, viable and resilient.

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