Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Congratulations to all Ensigns who were promoted to LTJG on November 20th!

LTJG Pete Deneen
LTJG KC Gaudette
LTJG Travis Murray
LTJG Patrick Sullivan
LTJG Maggie Ward
LTJG Steph Wood

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Goodbye Bering Sea

The time has come and CGC SHERMAN has officially left the Bering Sea! We are making our way back to homeport and will be there before you know it. While up north for an Alaskan patrol, a SAR-ready cutter is required to be in the Bering Sea at all times and the only available port call is Dutch Harbor, AK. With two back-to-back patrols up north, the SHERMAN crew has explored every nook and cranny of the island. While it may offer some scenic views, wild horses, a Mexican/breakfast/grill restaurant, and dumpster diving eagles, the crew is ready to head home. Legend has it that if you look at Priest Rock (which is at the entrance of the bay into Dutch Harbor) as you are leaving, this won’t be the last time you see Dutch Harbor. Let’s hope everyone kept their eyes forward!

SHERMAN Shoots Their Gun!

After a 20-month dry spell, our 76mm gun was fired! After much planning and preparation, the gunnery and fire-control divisions put together a successful shoot. In order to shoot the gun, you have to alert the area through a Securité broadcast. This message is broadcasted every 15 minutes, alerting sailors and aircraft in the area that in our designated position we are firing our gun including the maximum range and when the shoot was occurring. 29 shots were fired, giving the crew quite a spectacle. In order to facilitate the shooting, a large balloon (dubbed the killer tomato), is thrown off the ship and is the target the ship is aiming for when shooting. Overall, it was a very successful shoot!

Advancements for November!

Congratulations to OS2 Elizabeth Wakefield for making Operations Specialist Second Class!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Spirit of Sherman Award

Sherman has its own personal award that is picked by the Sherman crew for people who help out the ship and their shipmates to make the ship a better place for everyone. It is called the “SPIRIT OF SHRMAN AWARD”. The first award was given to OS3 Misty Snyder for helping with sailor of the quarter plaque. She updated the name plates on her own time so the crew can see their name displayed in gold. Just recently another member of Sherman received the award, SN Luis Orozco-Reza for designing two patrol t-shirts and drawing murals on the doors of the berthing areas. Spirit of Sherman award is a pin engraved with the SHERMAN crest which can be worn while underway. The SPIRIT OF SHRMAN is an awesome morale booster and a great way to promote the good deeds crewmembers and shipmates have done for the ship.

-OS3 Misty Snyder

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Rough Seas Beware

CGC SHERMAN has been hit by some VERY rough seas as of late! Multiple low pressure systems have passed through the Bering and unfortunately we have been right in the thick of things every time. Up to 30ft seas and 40 knot winds were measured by quartermaster of the watch during the worst of it! Unluckily, we felt the blunt of it as the seas were coming off our beam (hitting us directly from the side of the ship), causing major rolls up to 25 degrees during the night. Needless to say, we were very happy to have a port call this past weekend to get some much needed rest and good nights sleep. Hopefully we can run and hide when the next predicted storm hits!

Advancements for October!

Congratulations to all who advanced this October!

DCCS Richard Freeland
BM3 Daniel Smith
FN Hayden Webb

Advancements for September!

Congratulations to all who advanced this September!

EM2 Harry Kichta
SK2 Chelsea Carr
SN Charley Burnett
FN Steven Pateman

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Semper Paratus for change

We were so close, yet so far when it came to our potential port call in Providenya, Russia. The SHERMAN departed the fishing fleet to make our way across the Bering Sea, cross the International Date Line, and set foot onto Russian territory on the 25th of October. Unfortunately, Russia denied our clearance and we don’t have any rubles (the currency of Russia) onboard to pay for our stop. Luckily, we will still cross the International Date Line, giving the crewmembers who haven’t partaken in the line crossing ceremony a special opportunity! More to come with the line crossing ceremony in upcoming blogs!

The Deadliest Roll

As the small boat disembarked the SHERMAN, the boarding team had high hopes that the Deadliest Catch crew would be on the fishing vessel they were about to board. The Red King Crab season had just begun, and the SHERMAN was well into conducting multiple boardings of the crab boats in the Bering Sea. The small boat came alongside the fishing vessel wishing for a better course to embark the boarding team, but there was no such luck; they were the best conditions you could hope for a day like that. The only way to get onto fishing boats is by way of jacob’s ladder and this boat was no different. As SN Timberlake was making his way up the jacob’s ladder, he was about to crawl over the ledge onto the deck of the fishing vessel when the boat hit a large wave, causing him to launch into the air. Mid-air, SN Timberlake did a tuck and roll, and somehow landed on his feet, only to realize the entire thing was caught on tape! The Deadliest Catch crew was onboard and had the boarding team sign wavers to be featured on the show. The camera crew requested some of the boarding team members fake-arrest some of the camera men for outtakes, but the Coast Guard is not allowed to put handcuffs on a civilian just for play, so that was out of the question. Needless to say, that was a big morale booster for the crew and gave some much needed excitement for the fisheries boardings. So everyone keep your eyes peeled on the upcoming season for the SHERMAN and their boarding team to make their television debut!

The Life of a Boarding Officer

So far this patrol, I have done or have attempted to do eight boarding’s met by bad weather, and on two occasions I decided that the seas and swells combined with a sketchy boarding ladder were too dangerous to overcome. My most memorable boarding this patrol was also my first. Getting to the fishing boat was not very difficult, the seas and swells were welcoming and the cutter had closed to a comfortable distance. Once we were on board, I made my way to the bridge, followed closely by my fellow boarding officer, ME1 Kastrati, and my two boarding team members: ET1 Springsteen and ME3 Delosreyes. After I introduced myself, I had my boarding team members go below the decks and check to be sure the boat was safe for us to be on. After verifying there were no safety issues, we began our standard fishing vessel boarding. The boarding team members went about checking the vessel's safety equipment while ME1 and I began working on the administrative portion of the checklist. Between ME1 and I, we went through almost ten months of logbooks, examined permits and documentation, and questioned the captain. As I looked through the logbooks, I noticed that most of the fishing trips were completed without observers. Observers are contractors that are sanctioned by NOAA who ensure that fishing vessels are targeting the correct species of fish and that the vessels are operating safely. The vessel we were on was required to have 30% of their time monitored by an observer. When I did the math I figured out that this particular vessel had only 20% coverage. About the time that we figured that out, our team members reported that they had found expired distress signals and expired water-activated releases on the emergency beacons. With all of these three violations, I requested to the cutter to terminate the vessel's voyage. When a voyage is terminated, a vessel loses out on all of the money that could be made until the violations are corrected. The cutter radioed me back and informed me that District 17 declined to terminate and that I was to issue a ticket for the three violations. I issued the ticket (possibly a $10,000 fine) and left the boat. Overall, we had been on board for about 2 hours and had just given the most violations in one boarding in as long as I have been on the SHERMAN. Our first boarding brought our team together and proved our commitment to enforcing federal fishing laws on our seas.

-ENS Patrick Sullivan

Monday, September 27, 2010

SHERMAN Returns to the North

Just when we thought we’d be making our return to the South on another counter narcotics patrol, the carpet was pulled from beneath and two weeks later we were steaming for the Bering Sea. Now that we are in theatre, most have been pleasantly surprised with the late fall in Alaska.

After a brief overnight in Kodiak earlier this month SHERMAN hurried to Dutch Harbor for another 3-day round of Fish School. Boarding officers, team members, and operations specialists learned about the laws and regulations we would be enforcing over the next two months in keeping a level playing field in America’s most prolific and dangerous fishery. In addition to enforcing fisheries laws SHERMAN provides a flight deck for an embarked HH-65 helicopter capable of responding to Search and Rescue (SAR) cases. The first day out of Dutch Harbor, SHERMAN responded to a SAR case, in which a vessel overturned, leaving three people in the water. All three were able to swim ashore but were stranded and freezing on the island of Unalaska. SHERMAN arrived on scene, launched its helicopter asset, and provided over flight for the rescue operation by a good samaritan. All three people made it safely back to their righted vessel. Inclement weather has been the theme of the deployment so far, both the Gulf of Alaska and the Bering Sea have been roiling with intense storms moving eastward from the Western Pacific.

SHERMAN will look to make the most of the short patrol by maintaining a fast pace of operation and training. The new-look, energetic crew will look to gain experience and confidence after a large change out from the summer transfers. This is the first dispatch in a series of posts from crewmembers keeping you updated on the home front.

-ENS Pete Deneen

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

2009 USIC Award Recipient

Congratulations to CGC SHERMAN! We are the recipients of the 2009 USIC (United States Interdiciton Coordinator) Award- Superior Performance Award for Maritime Interdiction. On August 18th, 2009, Mr. Patrick Ward, the Assistant Deputy Director for Supply Reduction in the Office of National Drug Control Policy and President Obama's right hand man for drug interdiction in the United States, flew out from Washington, DC to present the SHERMAN with the award. The crew of SHERMAN has been cited for their distinguished performance during our 2009 JIATF South deployment.

On December 4th, 2009, a maritime patrol aircraft observed a contraband offload in progress and vectored SHERMAN toward the four "Go-Fast" vessels. The sheer number of targets created an extremely difficult and potentially hazardous mission. SHERMAN and the HITRON Detachment 10-01 applied superb "outside of the box" thinking to modify the existing standard operating procedures (SOP) in order to interdict all four "Go-Fast" vessels during a single mission. Outstanding mission execution resulted in the arrival of the cutter boat to secure the scene within minutes after each "Go-Fast" vessel was disabled through the use of disabling fire from the HITRON Detachment. As a result, 3 metric tons of cocaine were seized or disrupted, four go-fasts were interdicted, and nine suspected smugglers were detained and handed over to the Mexican Government for prosecution based on the evidence obtained and the case package from CGC SHERMAN.

Bravo Zulu!
-ENS KC Gaudette

Friday, June 11, 2010

BM3 Kevin Tanski - Memorial Day

Aboard Cutter Sherman there are plenty of chances to catch the big fish, Memorial Day was no different. It started out on the night of the 30th of May when we skillfully anchored in Makushin Bay, outside of Unalaska Island. Then we heard, “Down down all lines, up up all fish, commence fish call!”
Bos'n was able to get his line out first, but the first fish went to Petty Officer White, a small Rock fish. Then a few more fishermen decided to try their luck. Most caught something, like a Rock fish or P cod, but there were no Halibut. A few determined fishermen like Petty Officer Keeter and SN Campbell, didn’t want to miss out on any of the action so they stayed out most of the night.
Then an early morning for some, dropped their lines to see what they can pull up from the depths of the Bering. A lot more luck for most, especially Petty Officer Gerszi with the prize catch of the day, a Halibut. He was the only one who caught a Halibut during the two days of fishing. A few fish were able to get off the hooks of some and others lost their gear to the bottom of the sea. Overall, the crew had a lot of fun catching a few fish and enjoying a relaxing day off from the rigorous work of being underway.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

ENS Peter Deneen 28 May

To catch y’all up to speed, we left San Francisco on April 5th. Before leaving I packed up my room and left it up to my roommates to find our new digs in San Fran. It was a sad goodbye, they hadn’t returned from Haiti until the first week of March and now I wouldn’t see them again until Christmas. Our group of friends would be transferring out this summer, so the times were a changin’ and SHERMAN was headed to the Arctic.

First stop was Indian Island, WA to pick up ammo, a beautiful spot right near Port Townsend. The weather was terrible the entire way up and would be just as bad on the way out, we didn’t have seas less than 15-feet for the first 10 days. We spent the night and left for Kodiak in the afternoon the following day. Since then we have moored in Dutch Harbor several times and once in Adak, an island at the far western edge of the Aleutian Chain. We have boarded eight vessels, including two high interest vessels in the Bering. We have seen the Arctic ice cap, blizzards, sunsets at 1 o'clock in the morning, line crossing ceremonies, injuries, good times, and hard times.

A large portion of the crew is on the verge of transferring to new units. Fast-paced learning is taking place at every level on board the ship as the urgency to be prepared for the departure of experienced crew members has been realized. Like I said, the times are changing for everyone on board. There are some good stories coming out of the Bering this spring, which will be shared on this blog in the coming weeks. Stay tuned for more from the 720 in the northern latitudes.

Friday, January 29, 2010

CGC SHERMAN featured in Parade Magazine

SHERMAN hosted author Bob Reiss during our last patrol. An article about our patrol can be found at the following link and will be featured in this weekend's Parade Magazine.

Monday, January 25, 2010

ENS Steph Wood 18 Jan

I can honestly say that walking beneath the SHERMAN on a daily basis is the most bizarre thing I've done since reporting. The mighty 7-2-0 looks like a toy, high-and-dry and propped upright on insubstantial looking wooden blocks. In the absence of water, we look much less intimidating. What I find most alarming about our new no-water status is how we sway. We sway under the pressure of the wind, from the movement of the dry dock floor as large trucks drive by, and apparently for no reason at all. It wears on my nerves and always, for some reason, encourages me to contemplate what we would do if there was an earthquake.
We have started work on nearly every system in the ship. Our bow prop is in pieces, our shafts are missing their propeller blades, fuel manifolds are being overhauled, men are working beneath our sewage collection holding tank (not a job I envy), and spaces that are typically closed and holding fuel are open for cleaning. We cannot close most doors for fear of destroying the many electrical cables and makeshift plastic ventilation the run the length of the SHERMAN. It is loud. On any given day you can expect to hear the steady pft-pft-pft of large pneumatic pumps, incessant metallic grinding from the guys outside working on our "U.S. Coast Guard" paint, whirring from chain falls, a thousand different languages from the people on board, and of course boatswain pipes attempting to give the crew some semblance of a normal work day. We are working like ants in a hill that has been recently stepped on. It's busy and crazy and surprisingly fun.