Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Brave Ones

Before this month gets away, I want to give props to a branch of our military that is reviled by some, ignored by many, and hailed by few, but without whom we would be in serious dooky: THE UNITED STATES COAST GUARD!
The brave men and women do a tough job that unfortunately only those on the seas get to fully appreciate. They deal with everything from smugglers to errant sealife to stupid fishermen. They are our coastal defense against terrorism and first responders to ocean tragedies and often hurricanes.
They just don't get enough respect.
I wanted to put this out on the net, because, well just because.
From the 1st of June to the middle of the month (2 weeks-approx,)the Coasties have saved 17 people down here. They only lost one...and that one wasn't their fault. He was gone before they got there.
The most spectacular rescue was at night, with no light, in the middle of the open water, they found 5 survivors of a wrecked sailboat. Thank God one of the victims thought to grab a flashlight-that's what saved them. Kudos to the Coasties for not giving up-even in the face of such odds.
Also kudos to the Coastie they interviewed after the rescue of 7 people on a small fishing boat. They went too far out for the size of boat and engine and had to be rescued after they had tied off to a rig after getting swamped. The Coastie stopped himself short of saying, "That's the stupidist thing I've ever seen." Because, of course, it probably ISN'T the stupidist, but it was close.
My heartfelt admiration goes out today to the professionals of the U.S.Coast Guard. They bravely face machine-guns, storms, rough seas, roughnecks, stupid boaters, and the disrespect of the other 3 branches of the military.

1 comment:

ckartist said...

A cousin of my mother's was in the Canadian Coast Guard based out of Toronto. It's true that unless you have personal knowledge or need of their services, you have no idea of the work they do and the risks they face year round, 24/7 without invading anyone else's rights or territory, often for no better reason than other peoples' selfishness or stupidity.