Petty Officer 3rd Class Nicholas Basso examines the repair on a watertight door aboard U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf (WMSL 750) Feb. 2, 2019. Bertholf is operating in the Western Pacific in support of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer John Masson.

Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: DC3 Nicholas Basso

A ship operating away from home can seem like its own tiny, self-contained universe. There’s no calling a paramedic, a police officer, or a plumber when something goes wrong.

That’s why it’s a good thing the Coast Guard has people like Petty Officer 3rd Class Nicholas Basso, a damage controlman, aboard U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf (WMSL 750). When everyday issues arise, such as a door that won’t close properly or a sink that won’t drain, it’s people like Basso who ride to the rescue.


Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: ME3 Denim Kurtis

For Petty Officer 3rd Class Denim Kurtis, law enforcement is a family affair. His mother is a deputy sheriff, and his father-in-law is an investigator for the San Francisco district attorney’s office.

So when Kurtis felt the call to serve his country, the Coast Guard’s maritime enforcement specialty was a natural fit.

Today, Kurtis serves aboard Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf where he is one of two maritime enforcement specialists assigned to the ship.


Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: Lt. David Irving, Cutter Bertholf’s physician assistant keeps crew “Semper Paratus”

There are a few things Coast Guard planners can count on when putting together a ship’s deployment to some of the most remote areas of the globe.

Things on the ship will break, plans will change – and there’s at least a chance someone will get hurt. It’s that last factor that concerns people like Lt. David Irving, a Coast Guard physician assistant aboard U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf (WMSL 750).


Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: Crew of Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf

Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf’s crew was the 2016 recipient of the Coast Guard Foundation’s National Award for Heroism. From May 2015 to April 2016, the Bertholf crew, its Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron and Cryptological Group detachments completed two deployments to the Eastern Pacific totaling 213 days away from homeport. In all, the Bertholf crew detained 58 suspected narco-traffickers and prevented over 50,700 pounds of narcotics – with a street value of over $806 million – from reaching the United States. These efforts were responsible for over 10 percent of the Coast Guard’s total cocaine seizures in 2015.


The crew of U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Boutwell stands at attention among pallets of seized cocaine during an award ceremony aboard the Boutwell at Naval Base San Diego, Oct. 6, 2014. The Boutwell returned from a 90-day counter drug patrol in which they made six drug interdictions. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Connie Terrell.

Coast Guard, Western Hemisphere partners seize $423M in cocaine during multiple drug busts

“Our crew used their unique capabilities and authorities as a military service, law enforcement agency, and member of the U.S. intelligence community to disrupt transnational organized crime networks in the Eastern Pacific and keep drugs from making it to the U.S.,” said Capt. Edward A. Westfall, commanding officer of Coast Guard Cutter Boutwell. “These illegal drug networks are dangerous breeding grounds for all types of trafficking and their immense profits fuel violence and instability.”


Coast Guard Commandant, Adm. Paul Zukunft, recognizes Petty Officer 2nd Class Matthew Baasch from Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf in Alameda, Calif., Sept. 16, 2014, for his role in two separate counter narcotics off the coast of Colombia. The crew of Cutter Bertholf recently returned from a 140-day patrol off the coast of South America. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Patrick Kelley.

Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: GM2 Matthew Baasch

Sometimes a person gets a weird feeling in the pit of their stomach because there is more to a situation than meets the eye. This feeling is commonly referred to as a person’s “sixth sense.” Coast Guard boarding officers are trained to follow that “sixth sense” while they’re conducting counter narcotics operations in the Eastern Pacific and Caribbean Basin. That’s exactly what happened to Petty Officer Matthew Baasch and a boarding team from the Cutter Bertholf when they climbed aboard the fishing vessel Goliat I off the coast of Colombia on June 28.


UAS

UAS deployment nets historic drug interdiction

The Coast Guard completed the second of three planned shipboard demonstrations of unmanned aircraft system capabilities aboard Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf. These exercises are part of an ongoing effort to explore UAS capabilities and shipboard handling techniques. The Coast Guard is using knowledge gained from these demonstrations to inform a future cutter-based UAS acquisition project.


testimony

Adm. Papp testifies at Senate Appropriations hearing

Written by Cmdr. Rick Wester. Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Bob Papp testified before the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Homeland Security Subcommittee, yesterday on the Coast Guard’s Fiscal Year 2014 budget. The Commandant led his opening statement with a strong statement reaffirming […]


On stage

Adm. Papp discusses maritime strategic issues with Adm. Greenert and Gen. Amos

Commandant of the Coast Guard Adm. Bob Papp was joined by Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James Amos and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert to discuss maritime strategic issues during the WEST 2013 Luncheon Town Hall Address in San Diego, Calif. A main point of discussion during the event was the Commander-in-Chief’s strategic guidance that the U.S military “…will of necessity rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific region.”


ships in a row

Adm. Papp discusses cutter topics at Surface Navy Association’s Symposium

Addressing a crowd, including both Coast Guard cuttermen and Navy surface warfare officers, the Commandant described how maritime countries have shown an increasing emphasis on a “maritime governance” approach using law enforcement authorities in contrast to the traditional Mahanian “control of the sea” approach to ensure safety, security and prosperity.


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