National Vietnam War Veterans Recognition Day

Coast Guard 82 foot WPB and Navy Swift Boat on River in Vietnam

Naval History and Heritage Command tells me its National Vietnam War Veterans Recognition Day. Who knew there was such a thing? They are a Navy command, but they also have a lot of Coast Guard history available.

There are several pieces on the Coast Guard participation in the Viet Nam war on my heritage page. Unfortunately a number of Coast Guard sourced links were broken when the Coast Guard changed its internet provider. I’m hoping some day we will see these again, but there are still a number of good links.

Disaster Response Bill Includes $526M for the Coast Guard

Coast Guard Lieutenant Junior Grade Shane Gunderson and Investigative Service agent Bobby Brisby deliver relief supplies to victims of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. (U.S. Coast Guard photo)

DefenseNews is reporting that a $13.45B disaster relief aid package would include $2B for the military with $526M going to the Coast Guard.

“For the Coast Guard, which falls under the Department of Homeland Security, there is $526 million to repair and upgrade facilities damaged by recent disasters, and provide for response and recovery operations costs.”

Since the recent string of disasters has inflicted a double whammy on the Coast Guard, both raising operating costs and damaging infrastructure, passage of the bill would be most welcomed. Something to watch.

USNI 2019 Coast Guard Essay Contest

Below you will find the contents of ALCOAST 095/19. Hopefully there are some opinions among this blogs readership.

united states coast guard

R 271231 MAR 19
ALCOAST 095/19
A. Coast Guard External Affairs Manual, COMDTINST M5700.13 (series)

1. This ALCOAST announces the U.S. Naval Institute’s annual Coast Guard Essay Contest.

2. Overview. Located at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD, the U.S. Naval Institute (USNI), a private, non-profit, non-partisan organization, has provided an open forum for honest debate, informed discussion, and professional development for members of the Naval Services since 1873. The vision and mission of USNI is to give a voice to those who seek the finest Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard by providing an independent forum for those who dare to read, think, speak and write to advance the professional, literary and scientific understanding of sea power and other issues critical to global security. USNI is noted for its flagship magazine Proceedings, and a variety of historical and professional books.

3. Coast Guard Essay Contest. This year’s annual Coast Guard Essay Contest challenges authors to advance new thinking about the U.S. Coast Guard’s critical role in the 21st century. Authors are encouraged to discuss the most compelling issues, ideas, and solutions. There is no restriction on topic. Those authors who choose to write about the Coast Guard are encouraged to constructively analyze and challenge conventional wisdom and current practices. In fact, USNI encourages authors to push the “dare” factor, and Coast Guard senior leaders encourage diversity of thought and respectful deliberation of difficult issues facing our Service.
a. Eligibility: Open to all contributors – active duty military, reservists, veterans, and
civilians – who are eligible for USNI membership. The essay must be original and not published or under consideration for publication elsewhere.
b. Length: 2,500 words maximum, excluding notes and sources.
c. Prizes: First prize – $5,000. Second prize – $2,500. Third prize – $1,500. The winning essays will be published in the August 2019 issue of Proceedings. Essays not awarded a prize may be selected for publication in one of the Naval Institute’s print or online properties.
d. Submission Deadline: 31 May 2019. Note: Essays are submitted directly to USNI and the Coast Guard plays no role in selecting the winning essays. Applicants shall ensure entries conform to Chapter 6, sections (A) through (C) of REF (A).
e. Additional details:

4. Other Essay Contests and Writing Opportunities.
a. Essay Contests. In addition to the Coast Guard Essay Contest, the Naval Institute sponsors other essay contests throughout the year including the General Prize, Cyber, Emerging and Disruptive Technology, Enlisted, Leadership, Marine Corps, Naval History, Naval Intelligence, Naval Mine Warfare, and Midshipman and Cadet essay contests. For details see:
b. Other Writing Opportunities. Authors can also submit articles year round for publication in Proceedings or Naval History magazines, Proceedings Today (online), and the Naval Institute Blog (online). For details see:

5. POCs:
a. For additional information on USNI, contact RDML Jack Vogt (, the Coast Guard’s representative to the U.S. Naval Institute.
b. For additional information on professional writing for USNI, including essay contests, contact CAPT Greg Stump (, CAPT Holly Harrison (, CDR Brian Smicklas (, or CDR Grant Thomas ( who currently serve or have served as elected members of the Naval Institute’s editorial board.

6. ADM Charles W. Ray, Vice Commandant, sends.

7. Internet release is authorized.

Would be Happy to Host Post Concerning Cuttermen Chapter, Surface Navy Association Events Here

I have been a bit disappointed that there has not been more activity on the National Cuttermen Chapter Surface Navy Association Website. They have not had a new post since 3 Feb, 2018. There was no mention of the National Surface Navy Conference, and I know some of the local chapters have had activities.

In the future, if there is a need to spread word of a future event, or to talk about a past event, I would be happy to host a post here.

Bertholf Transits Taiwan Strait

Reuters is reporting that the Bertholf transited the Taiwan Strait in company with the destroyer USS Curtis Wilbur. This really should not be worth a mention. I am sure they were in international waters, but China has been getting their panties in a twist every time an American Warship passes through the Taiwan Strait. Don’t sweat it. If we were coming to do harm to China, we would bring more than a destroyer and cutter.

Cruise Ship Stranded off Norway, Passengers being Evacuated

Norway is apparently in the middle of a potentially huge SAR case. Aljazeera reports,

The maritime rescue service on Saturday said the Viking Sky, which suffered an engine failure and has roughly 1,300 passengers and crew on board, had sent a mayday signal as it had been drifting towards land..

The ship has managed to restart one engine and is at anchor two kilometers off shore. Passengers are being hoisted by helicopter. Fishing vessels are assisting. More from the BBC here.