ISS2 2016

Reservist Magazine is the award-winning official publication of the United States Coast Guard Reserve. Quarterly issues include news and feature articles about the men and women who comprise America's premier national maritime safety and security

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Gulf Strike Team gets their game on with Reserve, Active Duty Olympics The Gulf Strike Team (GST) in Mobile, Ala., has a huge responsibility maintaining a highly trained cadre of Coast Guard professionals. One of three special teams that make up the National Strike Force, it must be Semper Paratus to deploy any time to all-hazards, anywhere they are needed. This year they stepped up their game with the first GST Olympics, aimed at challenging and honing the teams' skills during this competitive incident response simulation. Reserve and active-duty personnel played out their roles in various real-time scenarios in this all- day event. "It's truly amazing to see the active and reserve cadres work side by side in a simulated response scenario. It ensures us all that we will be beyond prepared should a major incident require our technical expertise with additional reserve support," Lt. Cmdr. Ron Terrell, Senior Reserve Officer for the Gulf Strike Team. Exercises included donning Level A personal protective equipment, the highest level of personal protection, conducting a patient rescue in a smoke filled environment and containing a simulated chemical spill. "These events not only exercise personnel, but they also exercise National Strike Force doctrine. It is a great way to ensure active duty and reserve members are knowledgeable of, and conforming to, standard operating procedures," said Lt. Cmdr. Joel Ferguson, executive officer for the Gulf Strike Team. Strike Team reservists play a vital role as the force multiplier for active-duty personnel in preparing and responding to oil discharges, hazardous substance releases, weapons of mass destruction events and other natural and manmade incidents that greatly impact the public. "It is essential to have an integrated, trained and ready Reserve contingent at the GST as we have relied upon them to serve in critical roles during both natural and man-made disasters. The GST Olympics event helped strengthen our team spirit, reinforce essential response skills, and foster the close camaraderie that is so important to this response organization," said Cmdr. Kevin Lynn, commanding officer for the Gulf Strike Team. It is the responsibility of the GST to respond to incidents in the Coast Guard's 5th, 7th and 8th Districts. In addition, the GST has international responsibilities for South America, Central America and the Caribbean. — Story by PAC Susan Blake, 8TH District External Affairs above: Reservist MK3 Kenneth neese dons a Level a suit during the gST olympics, in Mobile, ala., on Saturday, Sept. 13, 2015. Reservist and active-duty gST personnel participated in this all-day event at Sector Mobile. Below: Reservist BMC John Bagby, safety offcer for the gST olympics, observes members donning Level a personal protective equipment in a timed exercise. Photos by Lt. Clinton arnold 10 RESERVIST � Issue 2 • 2016

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