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Book details
  • Genre:HISTORY
  • SubGenre:Military / United States
  • Language:English
  • Pages:259
  • eBook ISBN:9781483550992

Honoring the United States Coast Guard – Reserve (USCG-R)

The History of the Coast Guard from a Reservist's Perspective

by Dennis A. Telfer

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The United States Coast Guard (USCG), Guardians of the sea, has the world's worst publicist. Too many people don't know that the USCG is a bona fide military service, that the USCG goes to war, and that Coast Guard Reservists have served in just about every major event in Coast Guard history.

Honoring the United States Coast Guard Reserve (USCG-R) takes you on a some times irreverent tour of Coast Guard history from a Reservist's perspective.


The Coast Guard has the world’s worst publicist. Much of the general public doesn’t realize that the Coast Guard is actually one of the branches of the American Military Services and is the nation’s oldest continuous sea going service. They see the Coast Guard as; life savers at sea; heroes during hurricanes; or as boarder protectors against drug smugglers. There is so much more to tell.

The Coast Guard has undertaken missions ranging from; defending this nation during EVERY war; breaking the ice in the Antarctic to maintain operations at McMurdo Station; to having boots on the ground in Central America during the height of the drug wars.

Even less publicized to the public and within the Coast Guard is that for over the last seventy years the Coast Guard Reserve has been a major partner in the success of the Coast Guard. Honoring the United States Coast Guard Reserve (USCG-R) attempts to correct that deficiency.

It is the real-life story of a career Reservist telling the history of the Coast Guard Reserve, the Coast Guard, and “Team Coast Guard” from a ‘deck plate’ perspective.

At times the story is light hearted and even irreverent, how many people know that Humphrey Bogart was a Coast Guard Reservists and Popeye was a Coast Guardman? But the story is always serious about the efforts of the Coast Guard Reserve in their over seven decades of service to the citizens of the United States of America.

About the author

Dennis Telfer grew up in a small town in Alaska and never dreamt of serving during war time in a far off land like his father had done in Korea with the U.S. Army, especially as a Reservist in the United States Coast Guard.

He served his country for 23 years in the Coast Guard Reserve, the first ten years in the Seattle Washington area with the remaining years in places other than Seattle and it was an adventure from day one. Not every day was an adventure, some days were mundane but his attitude was that not all jobs are exciting but all jobs are necessary.

Each new opportunity or challenge added to the adventure like climbing the sides of container ships that were still underway (moving); being part of Presidential protection operations; being sent around the world from Korea to Kuwait; learning the difference between a dust storm and a sand storm; playing lifeguard with a loaded M-16 while fellow shipmates swam in shark filled waters; evaluating the performance of units and then turning around and inventorying those units; seeing ten foot waves while standing on a twenty-five foot open boat; or working in a hurricane, life was an adventure in service of his country.

In those twenty-three years he received over fifty medals, ribbons or citations recognizing his efforts. His most favored citation was a simple medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal AFR with Hour Glass (noting 20 years of service) with multiple mobilizations.