Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: BM2 Jovan Morales

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jovan Morales Eatons Neck, NY, keeps a sharp look out during a training exercise U. S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Sara Romero.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jovan Morales Eatons Neck, NY, keeps a sharp look out during a training exercise U. S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Sara Romero.

Written by Chief Petty Officer Anthony Duckworth

Originally founded in 1849 by the New York Lifesaving Benevolent Association, Coast Guard Station Eatons Neck, New York, is the oldest Coast Guard Station in New York and the fourth oldest in the United States. The Eatons Neck Lighthouse is the second oldest lighthouse on Long Island and the sixth oldest in the United States.

The first known keeper to the lighthouse was Darius Ruland, who was appointed at the age of 49 on Sept. 14, 1876. Since then, many noteworthy Coast Guard members have contributed to the station’s success as a beacon of hope for boaters in distress.

Continuing the traditions of great light keepers and notable local heroes like Petty Officer 3rd Class Nathan Bruckenthal is Petty Officer 2nd Class Jovan Morales.

Reporting to the station in 2012, Morales brought 12 years of valuable experience from four Coast Guard stations spanning four Coast Guard districts.

Morales, a boatswain’s mate, arrived at Eatons Neck and immediately made a positive impact on the law enforcement division by quickly re-certifying as boarding officer and small boat coxswain in just seven days.

Additionally, he took on the responsibilities as the unit training petty officer, where he led the station through a highly successful ready for operations visit, which inspected the small boat readiness and crew training records. Morale’s preparation and leadership throughout the inspection paid off, and the unit received zero discrepancies.

Right away, he earned the respect and trust of his supervisors with his level of knowledge and professionalism.

“Petty Officer Morales allows the crew to concentrate on their jobs and not worry about currency maintenance,” said Chief Warrent Officer Mark Satuffer, commanding officer of the station. “The training schedules ensure currencies are met at least one month before the end of the cycle.”

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jovan Morales trains crew members at Station Eatons Neck, N.Y. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jovan Morales trains crew members at Station Eatons Neck, N.Y. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

In the summer of 2013, the station received the new boat platform – the 45 foot response boat. Being an expert small boat operator and being the only member with knowledge of this platform, the command looked to Morales’ experience to lead the active duty members on the qualification process. He personally worked with each member and, at the end of the 60-day period, all active duty members held at least one certification as coxswain, engineer or crewmember on the new platform.

In his normal day-to-day duties as a boat coxswain and boarding officer, he is called on to board recreational vessels at all hours of the day and night, respond to vessel casualties, perform ferry escorts and execute waterfront security patrols. As a veteran petty officer, Morales interacts with port partners and recreational boaters with a calm demeanor, professional attitude and expert knowledge of Coast Guard missions.

Recently, Morales worked with the senior enlisted reserve advisor at the station to hold a two-week boat college for the 17 station reserve members and with active duty members from the local area. He began working on the project months in advance by scheduling around the challenging missions of the station and the busy summer boating season. He took on the task of coordinating boat operations for the 25 foot and two 45 foot response boats, along with ensuring boat crewmembers received one-on-one guidance on seamanship and navigational equipment. He personally provided training of the station’s area of responsibility, 65 miles of shoreline, to all 17 reserve members.

He also worked with the station’s engineering petty officer to guarantee each reserve member received extensive training on complex jet drive propulsion systems and observation electronics. In addition, Morales provided valuable and extensive law enforcement training to the reserve law enforcement team.

At the end of the two-week period, the reserve members accumulated 338 underway training hours. Morales’ efforts resulted in six boat crew certifications, four engineering certifications and two law enforcement certifications.

Morales’ hard work helped guarantee the continued success of the reserve program at Station Eatons Neck and the training received by the reserves members will no doubt complement the active duty crew and will also provide aid to the boating community of Long Island for years to come.

Do you know someone who embodies the Coast Guard Core Values of Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty? Please submit your nominations using the “Submit Ideas” link on the right.

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