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Coast Guard Foundation Texas Salute

Jen Fyke Web
by Jennifer Crowley Fyke
November 14, 2020

Our Texas event was hosted in a virtual format on November 12 in tribute to the United States Coast Guard. Together with our sponsors and generous supporters, more than $250,000 was raised for critical Coast Guard Foundation programs to support Coast Guard members and their families.

RADM John Nadeau and Commander Master Chief Marques Johnson shared insight on some of the challenges faced by Coast Guard members in Texas and Louisiana this year- namely five major hurricanes and three tropical storms- and the impact Coast Guard Foundation support had for many families.

“One thing we’ve seen, time and time again after each of these storms, is that our families have been cared for,” shared Admiral Nadeau. “While our members have been focused on the mission, our families have been taken care of. For those impacted, the Foundation has been there for them. It’s so reassuring to know that whatever we need, the Foundation will be there.”

As of the event, the Coast Guard Foundation had supported 110 Coast Guard families impacted by Hurricanes Laura and Sally in the Port Arthur and Lake Charles areas; our support has now reached 146 families, totaling more than $293,000 in direct aid to help Coast Guard members from the Gulf Coast and Florida recover and rebuild from the destruction left by nine named storms and wildfires in the West.

“Thank you all for what you have done to support us this year,” shared Command Master Chief Marques Johnson. “It’s been a long year, and the Coast Guard Foundation has been there to support us.”

Port Houston was recognized for its long term support of the Coast Guard Foundation and its meaningful partnerships across the maritime and supporting community.

“Port Houston is honored to be recognized at this year’s Texas Salutes the Coast Guard event,” remarked Ric Campo, Chairman of the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority. “All of us at Port Houston are incredibly proud to join the Coast Guard Foundation in honoring the men and women of the U.S. Coast Guard who help us stay safe every day.”

The heroic actions of Petty Officer Nathan Newberg, a rescue swimmer who was part of a mission to save 24 mariners trapped inside the MV Golden Ray, a container ship that ran aground off the coast of Georgia last year were featured. Admiral Thad Allen, USCG (Ret.) interviewed Petty Officer Newberg to find more about the experience and what it meant to be part of such a challenging rescue.

Keynote remarks were delivered by Admiral Charles Ray, Coast Guard Vice Commandant and Admiral Karl Schultz, Coast Guard Commandant.

“To the Coast Guard Foundation and all your generous sponsors, thank you for all you do to support the women, men, and families of our United States Coast Guard,” remarked Admiral Karl Schultz, Coast Guard Commandant. “Despite stay at home orders, virtual schooling, hurricanes, and national unrest, your dedicated Coast Guard women and men stationed across Texas never stopped performing their amazing work. Coast Guard men and women here in Texas work every day to safeguard Texans, as well as our national interests in the maritime commons. Thank you, Coast Guard Foundation, for supporting our Coast Guard workforce who for 230 years have not stopped standing the watch.”

Coast Guard Foundation Director Judith Roos expertly led the event committee of 24 individuals from across Texas and beyond, who worked tirelessly to plan and execute a virtual event after COVID-19 forced the cancelation of an in-person gathering.

Additional event highlights included a live interview with Coast Guard Foundation Chairman Will Jenkins, remarks from Susan Ludwig, Coast Guard Foundation President, and video clips from Coast Guard members around Texas sharing what Coast Guard Foundation support means to them. The United States Coast Guard Band performed the National Anthem, and a moving choral selection was performed by Fairwinds, the all-female Coast Guard Academy Glee Club ensemble. Reggie Rivers, former Denver Bronco and benefit auctioneer, emceed the event.

“Thank you to everyone who joined us tonight,” shared Will Jenkins. Texas is proud to salute the Coast Guard and say ‘thank you’ for your service. The Coast Guard plays a major role in protecting our families, friends, and homes during times of natural disaster and personal emergency. The Coast Guard has always been, and will always remain, Semper Paratus.”

Thank you to our Defender Level Sponsors: ConocoPhillips and Phillips66.

Thank you to our Guardian Level Sponsors: AET Inc. Limited, American Commercial Barge Line, Enterprise Products, Genesis Marine, Ingram Barge, Intercontinental Terminals Company, Kirby Corporation, L3Harris Technologies, Monroe Vos Consulting Group, Inc., Port Houston and SeaRiver Maritime, Inc.