My Coast Guard
Commentary | Sept. 30, 2021

BZ: Help meet the challenge of making 2021 the year “The Coast Guard Lady” receives the most cards ever to mark her 102nd birthday, and more

By Nicole Bertrand, MyCG Writer

Help meet the challenge of making 2021 the year “The Coast Guard Lady” receives the most cards ever to mark her 102nd birthday. The Coast Guard has encouraged members to send birthday cards to beloved Lois Bouton, affectionately known as “The Coast Guard Lady.” She has written over 100,000 kind and uplifting letters to service members over the past 50 years, which was part of the reason she received the 2021 Spirit of Hope Award. To further honor her, the numerous birthday cards she received from 2018 to 2019 were made “Artifact of the Month” in September at the Coast Guard Museum in New London. For her 100th birthday, the Coast Guard made her an honorary master chief petty officer. Bouton served in the U.S. Coast Guard Women’s Reserve, better known as the SPARs. She turned 102 on Sept.21, but after she turned 90, she decided that going forward, she would celebrate the entire month of September. That’s the spirit! 
If you would like to show your appreciation to her, you can write her at:

Master Chief Lois Bouton
300 S. Innisfree Circle
APT. A21
Rogers, AR 72758

Coast Guard successfully leverages partnerships through multi-million dollar contract to mitigate climate threats adversely affecting TRACEN Petaluma’s mission-readiness. On Sept.29, the Coast Guard awarded a $48 million energy performance contract, which encompasses a $36.1 capital investment at Training Center (TRACEN) Petaluma, California. TRACEN Petaluma has become increasingly vulnerable to intermittent and prolonged power outages due to high wind events, wildfires, and persistent drought limiting hydropower resources across the region. Without reliable electrical power, the TRACEN marginally provides for basic services while continuity of operations is severely impacted. There is no alternate location to safely evacuate the students, staff, housing residents, and any refuge-seekers. The project is estimated to result in annual savings of $1.2 million, 8.7 M kWh of electricity, and 50.8 kgal of propane. The project will generate clean energy, upgrade building controls, improve lighting, install low voltage transformers, and provide new heating, ventilation, and air conditioning equipment, among other things. “Accomplishing the Coast Guard mission requires not only working with organic resources but also leveraging the expertise found in other areas of both government and the private sector,” said Rear Adm. Carola List, assistant commandant for Engineering and Logistics. “I’m very proud of the strategic partnerships that the Coast Guard has established to address the unique needs of TRACEN Petaluma and create a roadmap for how we can take advantage of similar opportunities at other Coast Guard locations.”

Participate in the “Eight Bells—A Sea Service Celebration”. The Coast Guard Office of Cutter Forces (CG-751), the Heart of the Service, is sponsoring a sea service celebration centered around Oct. 18, 2021. It will honor the sacrifices of the women and men serving aboard Coast Guard cutters and highlight the hard work of the thousands of shoreside administrative, training, and engineering personnel who enable our fleet to operate. On Oct. 18, 1974, the Office of Personnel promulgated the Coast Guard Cutterman Insignia program to "recognize the contributions and qualifications of our personnel." This year we celebrate more than 231 years of our seagoing traditions, currently upheld by over 8,000 active duty personnel aboard our 257 cutters. “Eight Bells – A Sea Service Celebration” is intended to recognize the hard work done by everyone who serves aboard a cutter, including career cuttermen, cuttermen-to-be, and those who support cutters. Despite the diversity in missions and capabilities among the cutter classes, the time-tested seagoing traditions unite and bind the entire cutter community together. As part of the celebration, COMDT (CG-751) encourages all cuttermen, operational commanders, and cutter support elements to participate in a one-page essay/poem contest. All commands are also encouraged to host appropriate functions that celebrate sea service traditions during the month of October, particularly on Oct. 18, if possible. For more information, click here or read the Sep. 2021 Eight Bells – A  Sea Service Celebration on Oct 18 2020 ALCOAST 351/21. 

Happy 74th Birthday to the United States Air Force. The world’s preeminent force in air, space, and cyberspace has reached a major milestone. The U.S. Airforce has maintained its distinction over the years by staying faithful to its objective of global vigilance, reach and power, and remaining true to its vision statement: “The World’s Greatest Air Force—Powered by Airmen, Fueled by Innovation.” Through shared values, key capabilities, and upholding its Airman’s Creed, the U.S. Airforce continues to achieve its mission and aim high in all it does. The Coast Guard has maintained a formidable partnership with the U.S. Airforce, including conducting joint Arctic search and rescue operations as the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II and inter-service pilot exchanges during the Vietnam War. Today, the service works together in tandem with the U.S. Airforce to integrate former U.S. Air Force C-27J airframes into our operational force structure. We thank you for all of your contributions to the security and sovereignty of the United States and wish you many more years of service. Read more in the Sep 2021 74th Birthday of the United States Air Force ALCOAST 343/21.