Coast Guard Cuttermen Association


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Last Updated on Wednesday, 23 April 2014 15:28

Cuttermen's Association and Alameda Chapter Honor BM3 Obendorf

A memorial service for Boatswain's Mate Third Class Travis Obendorf was held on Jan. 30 at Coast Guard Island in Alameda, Calif.  Our Association President, Captain Thomas Crabbs was present serving as emcee for the service.  At the reception he presented Travis’ Mother with a Cuttermen Association Life Member Plaque, donated by the Alameda Chapter, and expressed that the Cuttermen Association is a fellowship of Coast Guard sea-going professionals who honor and advance the traditions, history, and culture of the oldest, continuous, U.S. sea service. He conveyed that Travis will be forever recognized as a permanent member of our fellowship; forever present on our rolls, and in our hearts, history, and traditions.  The Association also donated $250 to the Coast Guard Foundation on behalf of Petty Officer Obendorf.

The Coast Guard Honor Guard presents the colors during Petty Officer 3rd Class Travis R. Obendorf's memorial service on Coast Guard Island in Alameda, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Loumania Stewart.

Last Updated on Friday, 14 February 2014 01:46

Loss of a Shipmate, BM3 Travis Obendorf, USCGC WAESCHE

December 18, 2013, the Coast Guard and the Cutterman community lost a shipmate after Boatswains Mate Third Class Travis Obendorf died from injuries sustained on Nov. 11 during rescue operations in the Bering Sea.  In the words of his Commanding Officer, Capt. John McKinley, "Petty Officer Obendorf’s selfless actions directly contributed to rescuing five mariners in distress.  His willingness to assist others, even amidst the dangerous environment of the Bering Sea, truly embodies the Coast Guard’s core values.  Travis will be sadly missed.”

The Coast Guard released a message announcing Petty Officer Obendorf's death, which you can read here:

The Coast Guard Foundation is working with senior Coast Guard Leadership to determine the needs of the family and the crew of the WAESCHE.  As soon as those arrangements are completed we will share those details and the Association's Executive Board will discuss how we can show our support on behalf of the Coast Guard Cuttermen's Association.  For now, please keep the family of Petty Officer Obendorf and the crew of the WAESCHE in your thoughts and prayers


HOT OFF THE PRESS!! -- Coasties Companion Guide to the Mariner's Licensing Program published by the Coast Guard Cuttermen's Association!

The Coast Guard Cuttermen's Association is proud to announce the first of hopefully a series of Cuttermen's Association sponsored publications intended to benefit our membership and their personal and professional education and advancement.

"A Coasties Companion Guide to the Mariner Licensing Process" (PDF document) was written by Coasties, for Coasties, to help overcome some of the real and perceived barriers that active and former Coast Guard members may have experienced in their pursuit of a Merchant Mariners Credential.

Enjoy and "Fair winds and following seas" for those of you navigating the licensing process.  We hope this guide helps!

EDITOR'S NOTE:  This specific guide is targeted toward deck licenses and endorsements and is most relevant to Boatswain Mates and Deck Watch Officers.  Hopefully someone else will take on the challenge on the engineering side...if someone out there wants to accept that challenge, please contact the Coast Guard Cuttermen's Association and we'll gladly help you get started and give you a place to publish!

DISCLAIMER:  While we are confident of the accuracy of the information that follows, it is an interpretation of large amounts of highly technical information that is subject to change over time.  If at any point you have any questions or just want to verify your understanding of something, you are strongly encouraged to visit the NMC website or call 1-888-IASKNMC.  Additionally, if anyone identifies any errors in this document, let us know so we can correct/update it appropriately.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 October 2013 14:46



Please join me and the rest of the crew of MUNRO in congratulating CWO3 Jay Bride on reaching the impressive and rare milestone of 20-years sea time, thus earning the title of "Master Cutterman". CWO3 Bride enters the logs as the 34th Master Cutterman in CG History. MUNRO held a ceremony on the messdeck, south of the Shumagin Islands, enroute the Bering Sea in stormy seas and low visibility. We are thankful that the Sea Gods provided an appropriate environment for this august event.

CWO3 Bride enlisted in the Coast Guard in MAY88, and matriculated from QM "A" school in JUN89. Over the course of his impressive career, he sailed on the following ships: ESCAPE, PLANETREE, HAMILTON, BOUTWELL, HEALY, MELLON, also completing the Hero trifecta - JARVIS, MIDGETT, and MUNRO. He is a Polar Bear, Golden Dragon, Ancient Shellback (emphasis on Ancient), Golden Shellback, and a member of The Order of the Ditch. He has stood more watches, conducted more drills, made more rounds about the deck, caught more fish, reduced more stars, determined more gyro errors, laid down more fixes (on paper charts), trained more pollywogs, and told more lies than he can remember. He still loves SAT Pizza Nights, morale nights, swim calls, fish calls, and mid- patrol breaks. He does all of his Christmas Shopping in the Ships Store. He has a bucket of prop wash in his stateroom. He combs his hair (what remains) with relative bearing grease. He has the keys to the sea chest and he shot Charlie Noble. He speaks in Sea Shanties.

He is under orders to report to POLAR STAR, where he will continue to accrue sea time and sea stories. This was the first time in my career that I had the honor to present such a prestigious award. He was given a Master Cutterman Certificate with a Challenge Coin from each ship he has sailed in, along with congratulatory letters/coins from the MCPOCG and COMDT. I am honored to call him shipmate, and I have more than a few sea stories of my own, in which he plays a central role.

JFK once famously said, "It is an interesting biological fact that all of us have, in our veins, the exact same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean, and therefore, we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean, And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch it, we are going back from whence we came." We are grateful that BOSUN was always willing to go back to sail the seas in service to the Coast Guard, despite the personal sacrifices it required. I would wager several months of Sea Pay and FSA that CWO3 Bride has a higher percentage of salt in his veins than that of most sailors.

by Mark Cawthorn

Last Updated on Friday, 19 April 2013 21:17


USRC BEAR Helping Today's Scientists, read more here.  Joint Service Heritage Seminar, BEAR Hunt! More Information.

pdf icon Fall 2012


Last Updated on Friday, 19 April 2013 21:28

Memorial Service Information for BM3 Obendorf

1.  A memorial ceremony will be held to remember and honor BM3 Travis
R. Obendorf on Thursday, 30 January, 2014 at 1300 PST.  The ceremony
will take place at CG Base Alameda, Coast Guard Island, Alameda, CA.
2.  The uniform for all active duty attendees will be Service Dress
Blue with combination cover or equivalent uniform for members of
other services.
3.  Family and friends of Coast Guard members are welcome to attend.
Guests are requested to arrive no later than 1215 PST, and be seated
no later than 1245 PST.  Car pooling is strongly encouraged.
4.  Official travel is authorized in limited circumstances.  See
JTR(Chapter 4, Part A C4010).
5.  Request widest dissemination.
6.  VADM J. P. Currier, Vice Commandant, sends.
7.  Internet release authorized.


Tribute to BMC Terrell Norne III

There may not be a more appropriate way to memorialize the sacrifice of BMCS Terrell Horne III a year ago this week than continuing the Coast Guard's tireless vigilance in the security of our nation as the crew of USCGC ACTIVE and other Southern California Coast Guard units have been doing with great success!  We are thankful for the service of Senior Chief Horne and his legacy lives on through those who continue to serve.  Bravo Zulu to all our Cuttermen on the frontlines!

You can read about the most recent case here:

There is also a great video of an earlier case executed by our ashore response partners as well:

Coast Guard intercepts 5,000 pounds of marijuana, two suspected smugglersCoast Guard intercepts 5,000 pounds of marijuana, two suspected smugglers

Last Updated on Wednesday, 25 December 2013 23:40

2013 Board Election Results

Greetings Cuttermen Association Members,

I am pleased to announce the results of the 2013 Executive Board Elections. The following members were elected at our National Meeting on 24 April:

President - CAPT Tom Crabbs
Vice President - CDR Tony Russell
Secretary - BOSN John David Rice
Treasurer - CAPT Brian Perkins (ret.)

I would like to thank the outgoing Executive Board for their diligent service and leadership over the past two years. CDR Kevin Wirth, CDR Russell and BMCS Roger Fuller (ret.) did an outstanding job as we moved our association forward. I would also like to thank those who were nominated for a position on the Executive Board, we had a distinguished group of nominees and voting was close.

CAPT Chris Sinnett
President, CGCA

Thank you for your patience with us as we get through both the regular Coast Guard and the Board of Director's transfer season.  You can expect to here more from us and with improved frequency in the very near future.  In the meantime, we wanted to share some accolades recently received by some of your shipmates.

First, the Hampton Roads Chapter of the Cutterman's Association recently named MK1 Richard Hamilton from USCGC FORWARD as their inaugural Cutterman of the Year.  You can read more about MK1 Hamilton and his selection on the official CG blog at  Congratulations MK1 Hamilton and thank you for your service!
Also, the Cuttermen's Association's newly elected Secretary, CWO John Rice, was recently presented with the Captain David H. Jarvis Inspirational Leadership Award presented by the Navy League of the United States.  You can view a video of the presentation conducted at the Navy League's National Conference at minute 31:20 of the following link:  RDML Karl Schultz, the Eleventh District Commander helped to present the Award.  Thank you for your sustained excellent leadership Bosn!  
Last Updated on Thursday, 11 July 2013 09:26

BMCS Horne


Tribute to BMC Terrell Norne III


The CG Foundation has set up a web site to accept donations for Senior Chief Horne's family through the Fallen Heroes Scholarship.  If you would like to donate, please see the information below.

Donate on-line:

Under "Donation Amount", there is a drop down box stating "where it is needed most".  Please select Fallen Heroes Scholarship.

"In memory of" box, type in Chief Terrell Horne III.

Last Updated on Friday, 19 April 2013 21:20
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