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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Page 35 of 64

From left, Petty offcer 2nd Class Colin Thurston, Petty offcer 2nd Class dan J. Cutler, and Petty offcer 1st Class Paul a. Hudson, all Coast guard reservists, pose for a photo in front of Coast guard Cutter OcracOke, a 110-foot patrol boat based out of South Portland, Maine, at Base Boston. middle of the night aboard a CB-OTH. Deck forces are supported by the black gangs that have to make sure machines work when failure is not an option. Kennedy notes that morale has improved for members of the Reserve workforce that chose to join what are considered sea- going rates. "We have a lot of work now in our rate," he said. "The only way you're going to advance is getting work in your rate and getting experience. And, you're not going to be very effective if you are called up to active duty during an emergency without enough training. The whole point of our team is to get proficient on what the active duty crew does on a regular basis. If we get Title 10 (contingency) orders and get pulled away, now we will be ready to go." The R-MAT doesn't just work on small boats. They help service cutters that cycle into Boston on a regular basis like CGC OCRACOKE, a 110-foot patrol boat from South Portland, Maine. "MAT Boston has been working with the OCRACOKE during the work week," said Bond. So now on a weekend the R-MAT "is jumping right in and helping out." This included changing a pump for the port side engine jacket water pre-warming system, which circulates and warms the jacket water through the engine. This system prevents circulating dead cold water through the engine when first fired up, according to DC1 Paul Hudson, a reservist from Haverhill, Mass., who on the outside works for the Gloucester Fire Dept. The R-MAT also has mobile capability to drive to ports like Kittery and service cutters and equipment there, according to DCC Steve Hammerton, who resides in Lisbon, Maine, with his wife and two kids. "We have a lot of guys who have prior active duty experience, and that helps out a lot," Hammerton said. "If there is a need to send people around the district to fix stuff, then we will have no problem doing that." Cmdr. Jon D. Baker, Naval Engineering Dept. Head of the Base Boston NED, said everyone from Headquarters and in the field, both active and Reserve, "have worked hard to improve employment and utilization of reservists in performing critical cutter and boat maintenance. "The first key to the successful partnership was the assignment of active duty naval engineers to work alongside their Reserve counterparts on IDT weekends." Baker, also the Surface Force Logistics Center's 1st District Regional Naval Engineer, further explained "the NED Boston leadership gained the trust and confidence of 270' WMEC engineering departments, and pride in ownership and craftsmanship has increased." Junior members of the R-MAT agree, according to EM2 Matt Kinney who works as a full time HVAC tech when not on IDT. "With EM being primarily a shipboard rate, it's far easier now to get your PQS advancement quals done at an R-MAT team," said Kinney. EM2 Jerod R. Laflamme, a self employed electrician from Chicopee, Mass., and nominee for the 2015 1st District Reserve Enlisted Person of the Year, summed it up this way. "It's been so great becoming more involved with our work and becoming a kick butt group. With the new command structure, we have been able to reach out to other units to provide assistance with (rate) advancement. We have a lot of work to do now, both here and around the district." Members of the Boston R-MAT clearly explained with pride how they are continuing a tradition the Reserve workforce has been carrying out for 75 years: serving and supporting the active duty work force so the Coast Guard can execute its missions. � 34 RESERVIST � Issue 2 • 2016

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