Coast Guard Aviation Association Awards
Each year the Coast Guard Aviation Association honors active duty aviation personnel by recognizing outstanding achievement. Recipients of these awards are chosen by the United States Coast Guard. Awards include the The Victor Roulund Rescue Swimmer Meritorious Achievement Award, the Captain Gus Shrode Flight Safety Award, the Chief Oliver Berry Aviation Maintenance Award, the Commander Elmer Stone Fixed Wing Rescue Award, and the Captain Frank Erickson Rotary Wing Rescue Award. See below for award descriptions as well as past and present recipients.
CAPT WILLIAM J. KOSSLER AERONAUTICAL ENGINEER AWARD
CDR Jerry J. Krywanczyk
This annual award, presented by the Assistant Commandant for Engineering and Logistics, and sponsored by the Coast Guard Aviation Association (CGAA), recognizes individual accomplishments and achievements within the Aeronautical Engineering Program.
CDR Jerry J. Krywanczyk has distinguished himself through his professional competence, outstanding performance, and overall impact to the Aeronautical Engineering mission and vision. While serving as the Air Station Elizabeth City Aeronautical Engineering Officer, CDR Krywanczyk was instrumental in fleet’s engineering response to Hurricane Florence operations. He managed local testing of the MSS+ electronic upgrade on the C-130J in support of fleet wide implementation. He was key to the successful Air Station Kodiak C-130J transition by overseeing aircraft transfers, coordinating aircrew upgrades, and providing parts and additional training for Kodiak technicians. Additionally, always focused on personnel safety, he spearheaded a major initiative for mitigating exposure to hexavalent chromium generated during aircraft maintenance.
Captain Marion “Gus” Shrode
Flight Safety Award
Aviation Training Center (ATC) Mobile Safety Department
During the period of 01 June 2018 to 30 April 2019, ATC Safety Department exhibited extraordinary performance in support of the four pillars of the Coast Guard’s Safety Management System (SMS): Policy, Promotion, Assurance, and Risk Management.
The ATC safety staff significantly increased their leadership role in CG safety training. The ATC Command Safety Officer, LCDR Ben Walton, served as an instructor in the first organic Coast Guard Flight Safety Officer course and later in the year spearheaded the refinement of the course content. Furthermore, ATC FSOs provided input into numerous ALSAFETY messages and completed several trend analyses that provided important awareness and hazard mitigation to the fleet. Likewise, the ATC Safety Department assisted in several fleet evaluations of the new FORCECOM approved Flight Safety Assessments providing sage, actionable feedback and promoting SMS leading practices, many of which were developed at ATC. As all aviators intuitively know, to operate effectively and efficiently, aviation safety needs to be woven into all aspects of aviation operations. Aviation training is no exception. The actions of ATC’s Safety Department accelerated the inculcation of aviation safety into all aspects of aviation training adding significant value to the total training system.
In addition to the fleet wide contributions of the ATC Safety Department, they continued exemplary local practices. ATC is guided by a comprehensive SMS manual. This local instruction addresses aviation-specific programs within the main body and includes 19 specialized safety programs as annexes. The manual clearly delineates roles and responsibilities and ensures that safety programs are harnessed to advance unit operations and improve support activities.
This SMS is carried out in part by three safety councils, an enlisted safety council, flight safety council, and a command safety council. In addition to supporting a strong reporting culture, these councils have improved MRM training and supported risk management initiatives such as a water quality monitoring program to protect rescue swimmers.
ATC’s Ground Safety Chief Petty Officer, AMTC Michael Baines, made significant contributions to the efficiency and effectiveness of the unit’s aviation engineering department and provided lessons learned to improve maintenance practices fleet wide. Empowerment of this member has resulted in a robust unit reporting culture and made the Ground Safety Chief Petty Officer job a sought after position that carries a significant amount of responsibility and equitable respect.
The ATC Safety Department embodies the Commandant’s guiding principles of Ready, Relevant and Responsive. Their approach to promoting, educating, and advancing aviation safety at both the unit and enterprise level is most deserving of the 2019 Captain Marion Gus Shrode Aviation Safety Award.
I wish to extend my personal congratulations to: LCDR Ben Walton (CSO), LCDR Derek Wilson (FSO), LCDR Mike Gibson (FSO), LCDR Peter Maloney (FSO), (FSO), LCDR Brian A. Kudrle (FSO), LT Margaret Morgan (FSO), LT Erik Price (FSO), LT William Philyaw (FSO), LT Justin Dougherty (GSO), AMTC M. Shaun Baines (GSCPO) and Mr. David Britain (CIV). They have distinguished their unit and safety program from a highly competitive and dedicated field of safety professionals.
I would also like to recognize Air Station Borinquen’s Safety Department consisting of LCDR Jim Cepa and LT Mario Tinari, whose efforts ushered an array of far reaching Coast Guard-wide safety initiatives. This work included a number of positive organizational changes directly attributed to comprehensive mishap report recommendations, the enhancement of both unit and fleet flight safety training programs, and the creation of a highly respected flight safety program built upon non-attribution reporting.
The Safety Departments listed below are also commended for their noteworthy safety leadership, responsiveness, and initiative during the past year. A. AIRSTA Cape Cod: LCDR Stephen Drauszewski, LT Steven Podmore, LT Paul Williams and MST2 Andrew Lagarce B. AIRSTA Kodiak: LCDR Ian Hurst, LT Kevin Riley, LT Zach Brown, LT Joseph Chevalier, LT Michelle Moravek, LT Frank Cheske and CIV Ron Halter C. AIRSTA Miami: LCDR Eric Vryheid, LT Greg Kotowitz, LT Mike Gonzales and LT Clay Kosack 12.
Captain Frank Erickson
Rotary Wing Rescue Award
Aircraft: CGNR 6032
LCDR William J. Burwell
CP: LT Katelyn M. Dacimo
RS: AST2 Michael W. Kelly
RS: AST3 Luke M. Headley
FM: AMT1 Devin R. Lloyd
On 14 November, 2018, LCDR Burwell and the crew of CG 6032 were notified of the Fishing Vessel Aaron and Melissa II taking on water and its 4 crew abandoning ship in high seas, fomented by a Nor’easter with 50+ knot winds. In light of the reported 20+ feet seas, the decision was made to bring an additional rescue swimmer and heavy weather rescue equipment. Airborne within 20 minutes, the crew discussed all rescue options across varying scenarios that they might encounter once on-scene. Throughout the 140 mile commute, the crew calculated fuel requirements, programmed search patterns into the flight computer, and communicated with the HC-144 crew providing overhead cover. As the helicopter neared the last reported position, the conditions worsened, inducing jarring turbulence and gusts up to 60 knots.
The pilots tuned the direction finding equipment while the Rescue Swimmers operated the FLIR in attempts to locate the survivors. A 406-EPIRB signal was received and almost simultaneously LT Dacimo announced, “Raft, 10 o’clock. Mark-mark-mark.” LCDR Burwell marked the position, relayed the coordinates to the fixed-wing cover aircraft, and entered a hover to commence the rescue sequence. A 60′ hover showed the seas were now up to 25 feet. The storm battered raft showed no obvious signs of life.
AMTl Lloyd began conning 6032 forward to provide AST2 Kelly a downwind swim to the raft. The sea spray was assaulting the raft and extreme care had to be taken to keep the helicopter’s rotor wash away. As AMTI Lloyd sent AST2 Kelly out the door, it was clear the wind was going to sweep him aft-AMTl Lloyd adjusted appropriately. LT Dacimo announced a coming wave crest and AMTl Lloyd took this opportunity to position AST2 Kelly for his release from the sling. With the swimmer in the water, the aircraft backed away to gain visual contact with both the raft and the swimmer. The raft had been swept further away during the deployment and AST2 Kelly would have fight the towering waves to reach the raft. Swimming with all the strength he could summon, he was able to grab the sea anchor line and pull himself to the raft, discovering 4 hypothermic survivors. Relaying their condition to the helicopter above, he asked them to remain calm and ascertained that two of the boat crew did not know how to swim and that their suits had filled with water.
As AMTI Lloyd hoisted down the rescue basket, it sailed well aft of the aircraft. Fighting the winds, he skillfully delivered the basket within feet of the swimmer. AST2 Kelly loaded the first survivor and attempted to hang on to the basket to stabilize it as it came out of the water. As he held on, the wave dropped out from beneath him, leaving him to hang in the air and then fall onto his back. Upon resurfacing, he gathered the next survivor to enter the water with him. The next survivor’s mustang suit was damaged and filled with water, presenting him an arduous tow to the drifting basket. With the second survivor on his way up, AST2 prepared the third to enter the water. His suit was completely full of water and he could not swim–causing him to become frantic. By this time, AST2 Kelly was feeling nauseous and exhausted. He had reached the limit of his endurance, but was determined to finish the job two more times.
Despite the raging seas and howling gale, the crew of CGNR 6032 was able to maintain station and complete the rescue hoists of all 4 survivors. Their heroic efforts undoubtedly saved the 4 crewmembers of the F/V Aaron and Melissa II and are unquestionably worthy this prestigious award.
Commander Elmer Stone
Fixed Wing Rescue Award
CREW CGNR 1720
LT Erik Wyrick
LT Terrell Jackson
AMT2 Greg Knight
AT2 Trenton Garza
AMT2 Garth Booye
AT3 Kevin Blair
AMT3 Colby Smith
On 31 December, the crew of CGNR 1720 was launched from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point for a distress call from the M/V SINCERITY ACE which experienced an uncontrollable engine room fire 1,800 nautical miles west of the island of Oahu and 350 nautical miles from Wake Island –the closest usable runway. Their heroic actions resulted in saving 16 of 21 mariners at sea.
The SINCERITY ACE, a 650-foot car carrier vessel, was actively transporting motor vehicles from Yokohama, Japan to Honolulu, HI. The fire rendered the lifeboat davits useless resulting in a perilous situation at sea. Prior to launch, the pilots and aircrew conducted meticulous fuel calculations in order to maximize time on scene and on load multiple ASRK-24s comprised of life rafts and survival kits due to the complexity of the SAR case and the vast distance from land.
After a 7.5-hour transit, CGNR 1720 arrived on scene and observed multiple survivors in the water, spread out across a five square mile area, with several still attempting to abandon ship by being lowered into the water. CGNR 1720 immediately established on scene command, organized rescue efforts, and commenced vectoring five Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue (AMVER) vessels to each survivor’s location.
Due to the 20-24 foot waves and 30 knot gusting winds, it was extremely difficult for the AMVER vessels to locate the survivors. The crew of CGNR 1720 elected to deploy two ASRK-24s alongside the burning vessel to assist t_hose abandoning ship and deployed a flare in the vicinity of a group of three people to assist in marking their position.
CGNR 1720 established a maximum endurance profile and coordinated search action plans to minimize the gap in air surveillance before another aviation asset could arrive.
Prior to CGNR 1720’s departure from on scene, eight victims had been successfully rescued, and AMVER vessels were engaged in recovering another eight. After 11.2 flight hours, CGNR 1720 safely recovered at Wake Island. The next day, CGNR 1720 continued the search and safely deployed a canister packed with Meal’s Ready to Eat to one of the AMVER vessels to feed the survivors, since the vessel was not equipped to sustain additional passengers.
The crew demonstrated superior airmanship, comprehensive aircraft and procedural knowledge, well vetted operational risk management, and exceptional crew coordination. The crew selflessly performed their duties, resulting in 16 lives saved.
Chief Aviation Machinist Mate
Aviation Maintenance Award
AET1 Brittany Bryant
Aviation Logistics Center Medium Range Surveillance Product Line
It is my great pleasure to congratulate you as the 2019 recipient of the Chief Aviation Machinist Mate Oliver F. Berry Aviation Maintenance Award. The Coast Guard Aviation Association presents this prestigious award annually to an enlisted aviation technician who has demonstrated exceptional performance and enhanced the overall quality of Coast Guard aviation maintenance.
Demonstrating exceptional leadership, superb technical expertise, and professionalism, you played a key role in the Medium Range Surveillance (MRS) Product Line at the Aviation Logistics Center and the entire HC-144 fleet. As the MRS technical expert for three major HC-144B avionics upgrades including Minotaur, the Ocean Sentry Refresh (OSR) cockpit avionics upgrade, and ADS-B, you have refined intricate depot and operational level system checks for the new OSR and Minotaur systems and developed training products to clarify the procedures for the fleet. Participating in the cross-platform review of MH-65E developmental FMS software you noted several discrepancies that did not correlate with DoD/F AA requirements for surveillance systems. By identifying software design solutions and scenarios for the Short Range Recovery (SRR) Product Line, you enabled successful cross-platform engineering and software design change of avionics systems for the MH-65E.
Your consummate professionalism, exceptional leadership, superior mentorship, and dedication to the Coast Guards core values make you a role model for the aviation maintenance force and set the standard for mission and maintainer support while overcoming the challenges associated with an aging aircraft fleet. Your outstanding contributions and devotion to duty are most heartily commended and are in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Coast Guard.
The Victor Roulund Rescue Swimmer Meritorious Achievement Award
Awarded every 2 years, last awarded in 2019:
CDR Ken Coffland, CG Aviator 1600
CDR Hugh O’Doherty, CG Aviator 1732
CAPT Dana Goward, CG Aviator 1825
LCDR Dick Wright, CG Aviator 1914
The Victor Roulund Rescue Swimmer Meritorious Achievement Award recognizes individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the U.S. Coast Guard Aviation Rescue Swimmer Program through sustained superior performance, significant initiative in technology or tactics, and unique or extraordinary accomplishments in other areas associated with the Program. This award is sponsored by the Coast Guard Aviation Association and established in 2015.
This award is named in honor of AD2 Victor Roulund, who was assigned to Air Station SanFrancisco, when in late December 1955, he was participating as a flight mechanic aboard CG1305, an HO4S helicopter. His crew faced daunting weather and rescue challenges in the vicinity of the Yuba River in northern California, where countless homes and people were seriously stricken in extreme flooding conditions throughout the region. AD2 Roulund voluntarily accepted a very risky rescue attempt, after being hoisted down to a trailer home which was floating down the river. Using hand tools and quick intuition, he broke into the home which was nearly fully submerged, and rescued a woman who was completely disabled, and later placed her into the rescue basket for a successful hoist. AD2 Roulund and his fellow aircrew rescued a total of 138 people during a grueling 12 hour period of nonstop action. All four aircrew were awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. AD2 Roulund’s actions have since been considered the first example of typical mission challenges faced by present day Coast Guard Rescue Swimmers.
ASTCM John F. Hall, USCG
ASTCM Scott Dyer, USCG (Ret.)
AST1 Richard “Rick” McElrath, USCG (Ret.)
ASTCM Thomas “Buck” Beaudry, USCG (AIRSTA Miami)
ASMCM Larry Farmer, USCG (Ret.)
ASTCM Joseph “Butch” Flythe, USCG (Ret.)
ASMCM Darell M. Gelakoska, USCG (Ret.)