ISS3 2017

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 27 of 55

Port Security Units are a unique type of unit. Comprised of mostly reservists, these teams are a globally-deployable force that can provide security for military and critical logistics material and handling facilities from terrorism, sabotage, espionage, subversion and attacks. Additionally, they provide waterborne security and entry point protection at critical port facilities. They have specialized equipment and training and can be deployed and self-sufficient for extended periods, providing security to oil platforms, military ships and infrastructure. This makes them an advanced and adaptable force like no other in the Coast Guard's arsenal. They bring with them their TPSBs, armed with .50-calibur and M240 Bravo machine guns. Each boat is manned by the coxswain, boat crew and gunners, and each battle-ready crew will patrol for hours, interacting with other vessel operators and protecting its target. When Marines, soldiers and sailors make landfall, their equipment needs fuel, and that's where WHEELER comes in. At 340 feet long, the naval ship's mission is to transfer fuel from another ship to shore, where forces can take in much- needed supplies. While the WHEELER can deliver its cargo in a way like no other, the crew relies on naval presence for their protection. During this exercise, WHEELER's crew delivered water to the shore, via its network of hoses, simulating fuel. The PSU crews kept a 24-hour watch on land and sea, and the waterside crews partnered with Korean interpreters who could talk to fishermen and help keep them clear of the security zone surrounding the ship. Working alongside U.S. allies, interpreters were instrumental in communicating with fishermen and to build a rapport with locals. "We're not just translating, we're interpreting," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Henry Noeh, an operations specialist, and native Korean speaker, from Coast Guard Sector New York attached to PSU 312 for the deployment. "It's about understanding the culture, applying what I know to understand the context of the message. Pohang is a fishing town, and this is their livelihood," he said. For the PSU crews, this was a new deployment, and a new opportunity to test their capabilities, build camaraderie and pursue new relationships with other services, and most importantly, our ROK allies. "This was a challenging but beneficial opportunity for the Port Security Unit to demonstrate it can quickly deploy to support maritime contingency operations anywhere in the world," said Lt. Cmdr. James Fitzgerald, PSU 312's executive officer. "This experience enhanced our unit's ability to work with coalition partners and other armed services during peace or war-time missions." Closing the two weeks in Pohang, the crew loads thousands of pounds of gear, boats, trucks and shipping containers, and they begin the nearly 30-hour trek home. For days on end, they stood watch under a parched sun and patrolled across camps in slippery mud, soaked by the drenching rain. Howling winds pulled away any dry warmth from exposed skin, and the sea spray chilled them to the bone. They embraced their motto "Vigilance, Strength, Endurance," and eagerly awaiting their next deployment, after some well- deserved time off with family and friends. � TOP: ROK Navy Flotilla 5 Commander (CAPT Kim) and staff members receive a gift from Combined Task Group (CTG) 75.15 Commodore Capt. Tyler (USN) and his d eputy Capt. Galbo, USCG, OPS Officer Cmdr. Fischer USCG, and l t. Bennet PSU-312. Photo by ROK Navy M iddl E: MEC Brian Putman and Republic of Korea (ROK) Marines conduct sentry duties at the d ogu Beach, ROK, entry control point during Operation Pacific Reach Exercise 2017 April 11. Photo by MC1 Torrey l ee, U.S. Navy BOTTOM: CTG 75.15 members from PSU-311 and Coastal Riverine Squadron 11 (CRS-11) from left to Right; ME2 Jimmy Ku, C d R Steve Fischer, ROK Marine, ME2 Cameron Sims, ROK Marine, ME3 Jose Soto. Photo by ROK Marine 26 RESERVIST � Issue 3 • 2017

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