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My Coast Guard
Commentary | May 13, 2021

Bravo Zulu Column

By Shana Brouder, MyCG Column

Members at Cape Disappointment awarded for their courageous acts: Sixteen members from Station Cape Disappointment were awarded a group and multiple individual medals for their courageous actions on February 13, 2021. The members stood a total of 19 continuous hours of watch and were underway nearly 17 straight hours responding to three vessels in distress, battling 16 to 18-foot breaking seas. Their efforts averted a major environmental disaster, rescued or assisted 14 people aboard the three vessels, and saved approximately $1.15 million in property. Bravo Zulu to all 16 members:

Chief Petty Officer Jeremy Culican
Petty Officer 1st Class Ashley Seene
Petty Officer 2nd Class Rafael Atiles
Petty Officer 2nd Class Keith Bryan
Petty Officer 2nd Class Tyler O’Neil
Petty Officer 2nd Class Christopher Reynolds
Petty Officer 3rd Sage Baar
Petty Officer 3rd Class John Hoyle
Petty Officer 3rd Class Caitlin Maronde
Petty Officer 3rd Class Cameron Murphy
Petty Officer 3rd Class Brian Seehawer
Petty Officer 3rd Class Dasan Shinn
Fireman Zachary Tanner
Seaman Noah Cruz
Seaman Rachel Sitler
Seaman Kristopher VanSickle

Thank you for all you did and continue to do!

Petty Officer 3rd Class Alyson Yingling assists in emergency call: On May 2, 2021, Petty Officer 3rd Class Alyson Yingling, a health services technician, assisted in the emergency response to a medical emergency in her barracks while attending dental C”-school at the Brooke Army Medical Center at Joint base San Antonio. Yingling quickly assumed the primary first responder role, relieving the two panicked senior corpsmen. She established communication with the previously unresponsive patient via finger squeezes and rendered emergency medical support until local EMS and law enforcement arrived. Yingling’s proper reassessment of the situation and the patient’s condition, as well as her communication with the patient, helped EMS ensure appropriate continued care and transport. Thank you Petty Officer 3rd Class Yingling for your quick thinking. You demonstrated how the Coast Guard members are truly Semper Paratus!

Second-Class Cadet spreads positivity to rivals through student-run campaign: COVID-19 restrictions have been hard on everyone. When cadets at the Coast Guard Academy (CGA) were unable to participate in the traditional pranks they would pull against their rivals at the Merchant Marine Academy, quick thinking Second-Class Cadet Johnathan Kattnig had an idea to turn a prank into an act of kindness. Kattnig raised $800 through a GoFundMe fundraiser, and spent the money on sweets—sending over 700 sweet treats to midshipmen rivals across the Long Island Sound. Project “Donut Lose Hope” was entirely student-run and was a morale booster for both the givers at CGA and the midshipmen who got to enjoy the sweets. With the morale donuts also came hundreds of well-wishes from the cadets. Kattnig had asked the cadets to include some kind words or jokes to send to the midshipmen. While the rivalry between CGA and the Merchant Marine Academy may not have ended, Kattnig’s actions highlight the kind of commitment members have to serve the Coast Guard proudly. Bravo Zulu Kattnig for building bridges in such a trying time!

Member of Base San Juan receives meritorious advancement: On May 3, 2021 then Petty Officer 3rd Class Castro Otero, a health services technician reservist stationed at Base San Juan’s clinic, received a meritorious advancement to second class petty officer by Capt. Ben Davis on behalf of the Director of Operational Logistics, Rear Adm. Mel Bouboulis. Otero quickly qualified as a duty corpsman after reporting to Base San Juan and volunteered on several occasions for active-duty orders to assist the clinic in its efforts to respond to COVID-19. Otero adeptly identified challenges of tracking dispensed vaccines using the Coast Guard Business Intelligence (CGBI) and the Medical Readiness Reporting System (MRRS) and created a comprehensive vaccine tracker that addressed issues within CGBI and MRRS, streamlining the vaccine rollout at Base San Juan. Her efforts provided clinic supervisors with real-time data. Otero herself dispensed 700 doses of the vaccine, helping ensure our workforce remains mission ready. Bravo Zulu to the new Petty Officer 2nd Class Castro Otero on your well-deserved meritorious advancement!

Coast Guard Academy wins big at the National Security Agency’s Cyber Exercise: On April 10, 2021, a team from the Coast Guard Academy placed fourth overall in the National Security Agency’s (NSA) annual Cyber Exercise. The competition, which takes place over three days, tests offensive and defensive cybersecurity skills, helping build the nation’s next generation of cyber leaders. The cadets engaged with NSA personnel to execute and evaluate cyber mission strategies, completing cyber operation scenarios in real-time. The CGA team faced steep competition from civilian universities, such as Texas A&M University, as well as the other service academies. Congratulations to the cadets on the accomplishment of fourth place!