ISS2 2018

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 18 of 51

Master Chief Petty Officer Eric Johnson presents his children Jackie, Parker, Daniel and David Johnson the certificate of appreciation during retirement his ceremony, May 16. Coast Gaurd Photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Emaia Rise To the men and women of the Coast Guard Reserve, As the calendar turned to May, I took a deep breath and said, "Wow. Am I really retiring this month?" When I reported to Cape May in April of 1980, I never imagined the road would be nearly as long and certainly not as winding as it has been. Now, as this chapter of my life comes to an end, I can say without hesitation, joining the Coast Guard and spending the first seven years of my career on active duty was a great decision. Continuing to serve as a reservist was an even better one. This allowed me to keep my foot in the door while simultaneously building a successful civilian law enforcement career. What makes the Coast Guard outstanding? You've heard it over and over: "It's the people." Maybe, maybe not. Or perhaps a different spin: "It's the relationships." There is nothing I value more than the connections I've made over the years. Thanks for allowing me to be a part of your Coast Guard story. There is a certain peace in knowing the Coast Guard is in good hands. Master Chief Vanderhaden and Master Chief Williamson are seasoned leaders who will both keep your wellbeing front and center while ensuring the Coast Guard remains Semper Paratus. Thanks to all of you for your support, friendship and encouragement. I am indebted to you for your steadfast service. God bless you and the families that support you. Master Chief Eric Johnson, USCGR (ret.) United States Coast Guard Commandant (CG-00) 2703 Martin Luther King, Jr. Ave. S.E. Washington, D.C. 20593 Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Reserve the Coast Guard," said Johnson. "With a strong chiefs mess, both active and reserve, we don't have to be all things to all people. My job is to ensure our chiefs are ready to lead and able to do their job." A major example of this is the Chiefs Call to Initiation for the members new to the E-7 rank. Many of these ceremonies are performed with both active and reserve members participating and working together, cementing those necessary relationships. MCPOCG + MCPO-CGR Johnson spent much of his last three years traveling, as a pair, with active duty MCPOCG, Master Chief Steve Cantrell. The men presented a united front, answering questions at gatherings as a team, and supporting projects together – a relationship unknown previously. "That bond that Master Chief Cantrell and I shared was iron clad," he said. As part of this, Johnson worked to reinstate his position in the MCPOCG's office; an honor passed onto Master Chief Petty Officer George Williamson. The billet is now part of a three- person team working directly for the commandant: the MCPOCG, the deputy MCPOCG and the Master Chief Petty Officer – Coast Guard Reserve. The new title, MCPO-CGR, began the moment Williamson assumesd the watch. "If I had a word of wisdom to pass on to Master Chief Williamson, it would be to develop the ability to delegate," said Johnson. "There's only so many hours in the day. With the MCPOCG and the deputy, as well as our Reserve Atlantic and Pacific Area master chiefs, there's an amazing amount of talent and help to call upon." Johnson, his wife Valerie, and their four children will remain in the D.C. area. — Story by RESERVIST Staff

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