Category Archives: Coast Guard

Sector HG Layout

We posted Sector Corpus Christi’s collage a few days ago and here is the Sector Houston Galveston version.

Let us know which one you like better.

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Corpus Christi Collage

This week at PADET Houston we were tasked with building a photo collage for each Sector in our area of responsibility and we figured we would share them with you! We hope you enjoy.

The photos are from the multiple missions that Sector Corpus Christi performs regularly including fisheries, law enforcement, ATON and search and rescue.

Multiple platforms are shown in this collage including a MH-65 Dolphin Helicopter from Air Station Corpus and a 45 ft medium response boat from Station Port Aransas.

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Bowling for Forces

While most people were planning how exactly they would make things better in 2010, I was covering the 2009 Armed Forces Bowl in Fort Worth, Texas, Dec. 31.The game was a rematch of last year’s game featuring the Houston Cougars versus the Air Force Academy Fighting Falcons.

Last year Houston dominated, but this year the Falcons torched the Coug’s 47-20.

The game was interesting, but all of the surrounding events overshadowed it for me.

For instance, during the Armed Forces Bowl Luncheon at the Omni Hotel in downtown Fort Worth Lt.j.g Warren Fair had the opportunity to meet Sgt. 1st. Class Dana Bowman (ret.), who lost both of his legs in a tragic sky diving accident.

On February 6, 1994, Bowman gained worldwide attention when he and his teammate Sgt. Jose Aguillon collided in midair during the team’s annual training.

Aguillon died in the collision, but nine months later, Bowman became the first double amputee to re-enlist in the United States Army.

During the luncheon Bowman gave an inspirational speech and asked guests to remember all of the men and women who battle for our freedom each and every day.

While Bowman provided a great speech, he wasn’t the only person in the audience who has helped to make a difference.

Normally I try to avoid inserting myself into these posts, but there is no way I can avoid it this time.

Another attendee of the luncheon, which was attended by nearly 1,000 people, was an original Tuskegee Airman named Calvin Spann.

Now I’ve been fortunate enough to have met quite a few influential people from Gen. David Petraeus to Adm. Thad Allen, but it would be hard to argue that Lt. Calvin Spann is not the most historically significant person I have come across.

I could try and articulate just how significant Spann’s and the other airmen’s efforts were, but I would most certainly fall short.  So with that said, it was truly an honor to have been able to shake the hand of such a legend.

The next day, more than 25 recruits were sworn into the Coast Guard by Capt. Marcus Woodring, commander of Sector Houston-Galveston, during half-time.

While those who took the oath have only begun to serve, the members of the Coast Guard Auxiliary have been at it for quite some time.

Several members of the North Texas Auxiliary helped to put together the static display for the Armed Forces Insurance Armed Forces Adventure, which included a 25-foot Response Boat-Medium, a recruiting tent, and Coastie the Robot.

The display was so impressive that Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders Sunni Cranfill and Ally Traylor stopped by to get acquainted with Coastie.

All in all, it was a great event for everyone involved, even the poor over-worked photographer…..

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Flare Sighting

GALVESTON, Texas – In this video by the U.S. Coast Guard, Air Station Houston personnel participate in an annual training day on East Beach in Galveston Oct. 15, 2009.

The crew fired flares, practiced survival techniques and donned survival gear during the event.

(U.S. Coast Guard video/ Petty Officer Third Class Patrick Kelley)

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Volunteers Volunteering

SEABROOK, Texas – Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 6-3, of Seabrook, held its annual diner at the Seabrook Fire Department Oct. 16, 2009.

Flotilla Commander Jack Nickerson said that the event was a show of appreciation for the volunteer members of the flotilla, who help protect the public by providing free inspections and boater education classes.

Thanks to all of the people of the Coast Guard Auxiliary, who take time out of their own busy lives to try and save the lives of others!

(U.S. Coast Guard video/Petty Officer Third Class Patrick Kelley)

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Sector Houston-Galveston Welcomes Two New Stations

The Coast Guard held ceremonies to officially establish a new small boat station in Lake Charles, La., Sept. 30, 2009 (top), and a new station in Houston Oct. 1, 2009.    Both stations will serve as multi-mission units in areas that are home to major ports and heavy shipping traffic, which makes them vital to maintaining national security.  "Crewmembers of Station Lake Charles will respond to search and rescue cases, conduct armed patrols of the Lake Charles and Cameron waterways, protect public  and industry infrastructure during security threats, and escort vessels through key port areas," said Chief Petty Officer Joseph Gary, Station Lake Charles officer-in-charge. Station Houston is located close to the foot of the Sidney Sherman Bridge along the Houston Ship Channel.  The boathouse was severely damaged by Hurricane Ike, and the station personnel had been working in portable trailers while it was being repaired.    (U.S. Coast Guard photo layout/ Petty Officer Third Class Patrick Kelley/ photos on top row/ Petty Officer Second Class Prentice Danner)

HOUSTON – In just two days, Coast Guard Sector Houston-Galveston nearly doubled the number of small boat stations in its area of responsibility by officially establishing a new small boat station in Lake Charles, La., Sept. 30, 2009, and another in Houston Oct. 1, 2009.

Both stations will serve as multi-mission units in areas that are home to major ports and heavy shipping traffic, which makes them vital to maintaining national security.

“Crewmembers of Station Lake Charles will respond to search and rescue cases, conduct armed patrols of the Lake Charles and Cameron waterways, protect public and industry infrastructure during security threats, and escort vessels through key port areas. The unit will also conduct law enforcement boardings to ensure that commercial and recreational mariners are in compliance with current policies and laws,” said Chief Petty Officer Joseph Gary, Station Lake Charles officer-in-charge.  “I’m really proud of the crew.  Everyone here has done an outstanding job of completing their qualifications necessary for success.  They are a group of highly dedicated and motivated individuals who strongly believe in the mission,” said Gary.

In addition to the added security the new stations provide, emergency response times will be greatly improved.  “That two hour response time to the Upper Houston Ship Channel is gone,” said Capt. Marcus E. Woodring, commander of Sector Houston Galveston, at the establishing ceremony for Station Houston.  “Now we have boats in Houston and Galveston so we should be able to cut the time it takes to respond in half,” Woodring said.

“The commissioning of Coast Guard Station Houston, in combination with our existing Harris County and City of Houston maritime partners, will enhance the maritime security and search and rescue capabilities on the Houston Ship Channel and Upper Galveston Bay. Station Houston stands ready to respond to all threats, all hazards, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year,” said Capt. Jim Whitehead, Sector Houston-Galveston deputy commander.

Chief Petty Officer Thomas Rooks, who is the officer-in-charge of Station Houston, said when he found out he had been selected to lead the crew of the new station he wanted to come in and set the bar high.  But before he even had the chance to influence his new crew, he watched them demonstrate their capabilities as they rescued five people from a capsized boat.  “I knew then that I wasn’t going to have to come here and change things because this crew already possessed the pride and professionalism that I expect,” said Rooks.

“It is very rare to establish a new Coast Guard Station. The creation of these two new stations speaks directly to the importance of the Gulf Region to the nation as a whole.  The safety and security of American citizens and industry interests are core missions of the Coast Guard and these stations will provide first responder resources in vital areas,” said Woodring.

Both station’s primary response asset is the 25-foot response boat. Station Lake Charles has 13 boats and Station Houston has four.

(U.S. Coast Guard photo layout/ Petty Officer Third Class Patrick Kelley, photos on top row/ Petty Officer Second Class Prentice Danner)

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Cynthia Woods Sailor’s Savior

Coast Guard Awards Roger Stone Gold Lifesaving Medal

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HOUSTON — Capt. Marcus Woodring, commander of Coast Guard Sector Houston-Galveston, presents Linda Stone the Gold Lifesaving Medal that her husband earned for his heroic actions that followed the capsizing of the sailing vessel Cynthia Woods last year during a ceremony on the Mitchell Campus of Texas A&M University at Galveston July 27, 2009.

DSC_0145 by you.

Linda Stone wipes away tears as she describes her husband’s heroic actions.

DSC_0093 by you.

The medal was established by Congress in 1874 and is one of the oldest military medals. Since then, approximately 700 medals have been awarded.   In contrast, the Medal of Honor, established approximately 10 years earlier, has been awarded 3,448 times.

The Gold Lifesaving Medal is awarded by the Commandant of the Coast Guard to any person who rescues, or endeavors to rescue, any other person from drowning, shipwreck, or other peril of the water. To merit the award of the Gold Lifesaving Medal, the rescue must be made at the risk to one’s own life and show extreme heroic daring.

The Coast Guard is the ultimate award authority for the Lifesaving Medal and issues the decorations to members of all military branches as well as civilians.

For more photos of the ceremony please visit CGVI.USCG.MIL

(U.S. Coast Guard photos by Petty Officer Patrick Kelley)

Click the above image to obtain a high-resolution version.

Saving Lives and Guarding the Coast Since 1790.
The United States Coast Guard — Proud History. Powerful Future
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