Coast Guard News
TRACEN Cape May, N.J.
U.S. Coast Guard
Coast Guard Recruit Company Echo 187 weekly journal. Graduation October 19th, 2012
Summary of week 05:
Today was the beginning of week 05 and we aren’t very good at our required knowledge, but our teamwork has improved. Echo Company is getting bigger from the people getting reverted from Delta. Seeing so many people from Delta makes some recruits a little uneasy but the recruits from Delta have helped a lot in our company.
Being the week 05 company on the regiment means that we have more responsibilities because we are the junior company on the regiment, only one company has been here longer than we have. A lot of times people leave the company for things like colors detail or work detail, which are only some of the responsibilities our company has now.
This morning we ran 04 laps around the parade field but there weren’t very many of us. We then had a class about flags and pennants. Our instructor for that class was very inspiring and had many stories to tell and lots of advice for us. After chow we had a class at Seamanship with Petty Officer Douthit about Radio Communications. Echo was very tired--half of the class was standing in the back just to stay awake. Later on in the evening Echo had their very first uniform inspection by Master Chief Berry. Master Chief told us how after Charlie company graduates, we’ll officially be the junior company on the regiment. Our Company Commanders haven’t been very pleased with our progress yet because later on in the evening we had to do more laundry drills.
This morning Echo woke up to the Company Yeoman instead of their company commanders. In an attempt to prove that we can get things done ourselves, we started getting ready to step off for chow. The day started out with lots of confidence, but as soon as one person forgot to fill their cups all the way up with water, that confidence quickly turned to fear and everyone went back into survival mode. Most of the time in the galley recruits are scared to get up and dump their trays by themselves because they don’t want to get singled out by the Company Commanders.
The morning may have started with confidence but throughout the day the confidence decreased and everyone was back in survival mode, almost like it was week 03 all over again.
The morning started with a quick breakfast at the galley and then off to the gym for a life cycles work out. The life cycles are probably one of the hardest work outs we do here in Cape May. Afterwards we had our Seamanship midterm. Not everyone scored very well, but the score itself didn’t matter too much; all that mattered was that we took the midterm. After the midterm we had a class on Personal Flotation Devices, or PFD’s for short. We had a little contest to see who could put theirs on the fastest, and once we had the two fastest recruits we played a little game with them where we turned the lights off and kicked their flotation device away from them. In the end, SR Cartwright was the fastest. Later that evening Echo had a team building exercise. In the exercise, no one was allowed to talk and only one person knew what we had to do. The task was to find 03 pieces of paper in the parade field that had questions on it. It was very difficult and confusing but eventually we figured it out.
This Thursday was a long day for Echo Company. The schedule said that we had a class about travel arrangements and that we needed to know our orders for the class, so everyone was excited thinking that we’d be finding out our orders today. Having so many classes in one day didn’t help with the anticipation. Unfortunately by the time we got to the class for travel arrangements we still hadn’t learned our orders. Later on after that class we practiced Manual of Arms and learned a new close order drill movement. We stood in small groups together to help each other with it. There was a blood drive going on at Healy Hall as well and everyone who could volunteered to give blood. Some could not give blood because of recent shots they may have had or being on light duty. Later that evening the company had a little punishment from Petty Officer Miligan. The females had to hold our their Blue Jacket Books and read the Code of Conduct while the males sat in the sniper position with their pieces, then after a while of that we switched. Required knowledge isn’t hard to learn, but when you’re asked to spit it out on the spot it can be a little difficult.
The day started with chow, as always. After chow we went straight to medical to have more shots. Everyone got the Yellow Fever shot and a shot for Smallpox. Everyone was very nervous about the smallpox shot because it blisters, is very contagious, and requires a lot of extra care.
After having our shots Echo went over to the gymnasium to help clean up from the graduation ceremony for Charlie company. Seeing all the Charlie recruits, newly graduated with their families just made everyone more excited for our own graduation.
Once the auditorium was clean we headed straight to class. Today the class was about travel entitlements. It described to us the different benefits the government will give to us based on how we plan on getting to our new duty station.
In the evening Echo practiced more of our Manual of Arms and Close Order Drills. We had a rough start at it but the more we practiced the better we got. Currently the Manual of Arms Champ for Echo company is SR Gager. For anyone from Echo who wants the Manual of Arms award at graduation, he’s the recruit to beat. During practicing Manual of Arms, sometimes our Company Commanders will let us challenge SR Gager. Only one of the females has even attempted to challenge him so far!
It unfortunate to say that the lowest part of our day was losing 02 of our shipmates from Echo. They will be joining Foxtrot company now who is 02 weeks behind us. They will be missed but we will all be rooting for them, we know they can pull through and graduate with their new company.
Saturdays are starting to become the most exciting days of our weeks. This Saturday Echo tried out the confidence course, the obstacle course here on base next to the track. Everyone was required to try the course at least once but they weren’t required to finish it. At the end of the course was the rope climb, our Lead Company Commander told us if at least one of the females reaches the top and rings the bell then we will find out our orders today. There were 02 females who were very, very close, SR Hartsman and SR Sohnrey, but they didn’t quite make it. We were all surprised when the last few recruits were finishing the course and SR Korin made it to the top and rang the bell, the only female in our company to do so. After that, just like he promised, our Lead Company Commander called us up in front of the company one by one and told us our orders. Only 02 recruits seemed a little uneasy about their orders, most of the company got almost exactly where they wanted to go.
After chow the company had a meeting with our company mentors, Admiral Shultz and Master Chief Bushey. They answered a lot of our questions that we had about our stations; most of us got stationed on a cutter of some sort. The day was very productive for Echo--there was no incentive training and we were allowed to carry out our evening routine.
Sundays always seem to be the quietest and calmest days on the regiment. We started out with chow early in the morning, then we cleaned James hall for about an hour and after that divine hours commenced. Everyone had to finish filling out their sheets for their sponsors at their new stations and were required to fill out their travel arrangement surveys and to call their families to work out their traveling arrangements. We were all very, very happy to hear from our families today. After divine hours the company had our second company run, which is when we form up as a company and get to run off the base into Cape May as a company singing our cadences. Today was the 5K run for us, longer than the one we did last week. It wasn’t easy, everyone was sweating, but the fun cadences and seeing the town makes it easier for us to run, plus its fun to see all the civilians cheering us on down the street. The rest of the evening was pretty quiet. We practiced our Manual of Arms in the squadbays while some of our shipmates tried getting in contact with their units.
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