The following is from the State of the Coast Guard address from Adm. Robert Papp, commandant of the Coast Guard on Feb. 26, 2014.
Good morning, Shipmates! Ladies, Gentleman and special guests – to all our shipmates worldwide that will see this on delay – and our future leaders and heroes in New London and Cape May.
It should come as no surprise when I tell you that I loved going to sea. Shipboard life has traditions, daily rhythms, and predictability that helps us to deal with the ultimate in unpredictability – the sea. And as a ship captain, I always enjoyed going up to the bridge to check in with the watchstanders, and to do a self- assessment on where we were, and where we were going.
I’ve always spoken to you in the words and phrases of a ship’s Captain, because that is how I grew up in the Service. But I am first and always a Coast Guardsman, and every part of our Service is vitally important to who we are.
And each year I’ve appreciated this opportunity to figuratively go up to the bridge to scan the horizon and check on our progress along the charted course. So what do I see?
When I spoke to you two years ago, I said we were sailing in “Uncertain and Stormy Seas”.
Those “Uncertain and Stormy Seas” continue…but the barometer seems to be rising, the winds have veered and abated slightly, and I think I see some rays of sunshine over the horizon. What an extraordinary time for our Coast Guard!