united states coast guard

R 131705Z MAY 21
ALCOAST 182/21
SSIC 16100
1. Per REF (A), this ALCOAST announces the recipients of the 2019
AFRAS Gold and Silver Medals. The Gold Medal is awarded annually
to a Coast Guard enlisted member who exhibited exceptional courage
and heroism during a rescue at sea. The Silver Medal is awarded
annually to a deserving Coast Guard Auxiliarist for a heroic rescue
for lives saved in either inland or coastal waters.
2. Due to COVID, AFRAS delayed the selection and presentation of
the 2019 awards for one year. Presentation will be as per
paragraph 6 below.
3. Gold Medal.
   a. The 2020 Gold Medal is awarded to AST1 Eric Young and AST1
Nathan Newberg, Coast Guard Air Station Savannah, Georgia. Both
are recognized for their superior performance of duty while serving
as Rescue Swimmers on Coast Guard helicopters 6531 (CGNR 6531)
and CG44 (CGNR 6544) during the 08 September 19 rescue of survivors
from the M/V GOLDEN RAY. M/V GOLDEN RAY, a 656-foot cargo vessel
containing over 4,200 vehicles, equipment and 24 crewmembers,
suffered a shipboard fire and capsized in St. Simons Sound, Georgia.
   b. Upon arriving on scene, CGNR 6531 lowered AST1 Young over
100 feet onto the GOLDEN RAY, who found a group of survivors using
their chem-lights to show their location. While connected to the
hoist cable, AST1 Young then traversed the near-vertical deck and
recovered a survivor using a rescue sling. CGNR 6531 again
repositioned and lowered AST1 Young 130 feet to recover three
additional trapped crewmembers, including one severely injured.
   c. As CGNR 6531 departed the stricken ship to transport the
survivors to medical services, CGNR 6544 arrived on scene and
deployed AST1 Newberg to the starboard bridge wing. AST1 Newberg
secured a section of fire hose to the ship railing and rappelled
into the bridge, where he located the trapped master and pilot.
The Captain initially refused to leave the vessel without knowing
the status of the crewmembers trapped below. Displaying exceptional
physical stamina, AST1 Newberg was able to lower the pilot to the
port bridge wing and then an additional 40 feet to a rescue boat.
With CGNR 6544 low on fuel, AST1 Newberg returned to the Captain,
communicated to him the status of his engine room crewmembers,
extracted him from the bridge, and safely hoisted him onto CGNR
6544. ASTI Newberg then conducted a survivor interview that shaped
the next 36 hours of rescue operations focused on recovering the
additional GOLDEN RAY crewmembers trapped below.
   d. AST1 Young and AST1 Newberg demonstrated outstanding courage,
quick thinking, and the ability to adapt to an extremely demanding
situation, resulting in the rescue of six lives and locating four
additional crewmembers trapped below deck.
   a. The Silver Medal is awarded to Auxiliarists Stephen Wyatt and
Gloria Wyatt, who are recognized for their superior performance of
duty during the 03 July 2019 rescue of four persons from a burning
boat on the Intercoastal Waterway, near Matanzas Inlet,
St. Augustine, Florida.
   b. While participating in a recreational boating outing on their
private vessel, PUMPDOG II, Auxiliarists Stephen and Gloria Wyatt
observed the 40-foot motor cruiser DAYDREAMER on fire. Auxiliarist
Stephen Wyatt headed for the burning motor cruiser and then radioed
a distress call to Coast Guard Sector Jacksonville advising them of
the situation and the presence of four persons in the water.
   c. Auxiliarist Stephen Wyatt maneuvered the PUMPDOG II, and
directed a second vessel operated by another family member, to
approach the four victims who were within twenty-five feet of
the burning vessel. Braving the intense heat and danger presented
by the unstable burning vessel, Auxiliarists Stephen and Gloria
Wyatt were able to bring the victims aboard the rescuing vessels.
As the victims were pulled from the water, a propane tank on the
burning vessel exploded. Both rescuing vessels immediately
retreated to a safe distance to tend to the victims.
   d. Auxiliarist Stephen Wyatt directed the transfer of victims
aboard the second vessel to the PUMPDOG II where his son, a U.S.
Air Force medical doctor, evaluated their physical condition.
Auxiliarists Stephen and Gloria Wyatt remained on scene assisting
the rescued family and helping to ensure there were no significant
injuries that required additional treatment. The motor cruiser
DAYDREAMER was a total loss, but the family onboard the cruiser
escaped serious injury due to the heroic efforts of Auxiliarists
Stephen and Gloria Wyatt.
5. In addition to the Gold and Silver Medal recipients, the other
AFRAS award nominees demonstrated exceptional courage and have
further enhanced the Coast Guard reputation as the Lifesavers
and Guardians of the Sea. These outstanding nominees include:
   a. Auxiliarists Andy Crowley, John Yowell, and Tim Youngern –
USCG Auxiliary District 5 – Northern Region.
   b. Auxiliarists Joshua Zajac, Sally Stelnicki, Les Piskopos,
and Ruth Aurigemma – USCG Auxiliary District 9 – Western Region.
6. The Gold and Silver Award recipients will be recognized at a
ceremony hosted by AFRAS in the House Rayburn Congressional Office
Building, Washington, DC in the Fall, 2021.
7. Congratulations to the AFRAS Gold and Silver Medal recipients
and all the nominees on a job well done.
8. COMDT (CG-SAR) AFRAS awards POC: Mr. Michael Clarke
(202) 372-2090,
9. Ms. Dana S. Tulis, Director, Emergency Management (CG-5RI),
10. Internet released is authorized.