The Long Blue Line: 75 years ago—Service trailblazer and FRC namesake Olivia Hooker took the oath

At 98 years old, Olivia Hooker recalled her experiences as one of the first African American female members in the Coast Guard SPAR program during World War II. Hooker is a native of White Plains, N.Y., and recieved her Doctorate as a school psychologist. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Ali Flockerzi.

Dr. Olivia J. Hooker was a pioneer in the history of women and minorities in the Coast Guard and the nation. She believed that her military service taught her “a lot about order and priorities” and “how to better form relationships, and how to deal with people without bias and prejudice.” Despite experiencing hatred and racism in her own life, she devoted her life and her career to serving the needs of her community and her nation.

Stories Behind the State of the Coast Guard

The theme for the 2020 State of the Coast Guard Address is “Why I Serve,” which highlights the individual motivations each of us have to serve in the world’s best Coast Guard.

No matter the motivation, our people come from every corner of society and bring with them individual experiences as diverse as our Nation. Each person’s unique skills and backgrounds are vital to our missions, and we wanted to capture the importance of that diversity during the State of the Coast Guard.

The Long Blue Line: 140 years ago–FRC hero William Chadwick and the fight for the George Taulane

Rare vintage photograph of William Chadwick, heroic Gold Lifesaving Medal keeper of the Green Island Lifesaving Station, after his retirement from active service. (Courtesy of Morton Bell)

As it has for other enlisted heroes, the United States Coast Guard will be commissioning a new Fast Response Cutter in honor of William Chadwick, recipient of the Congressional Gold Lifesaving Medal. This essay tells the story of Chadwick, including his life, his service in the United States Lifesaving Service and his famous rescue of the George Taulane, which pitted man against Mother Nature.

Dear Coast Guard Family: Suicide Prevention | How to Get Help and How to Give Help

Once a month, Coast Guard Compass will feature “Dear Coast Guard Family,” a column for Coast Guard families by Coast Guard spouse Rachel Conley. Rachel is married to her high school sweetheart, Chief Warrant Officer James Conley, and is the mother of three children. Rachel passionately serves as a Coast Guard Ombudsman and advocate of Coast Guard families. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the United States Coast Guard Ombudsman of the Year Award.

The Long Blue Line: Buffalo’s “White Hurricane” and the final hours of Light Vessel 82

Light Vessel 82 in Buffalo Harbor not long after it was raised to the surface in September 1915. (U.S. Coast Guard)

LV-82, the most modern lightship of its time in the U.S. Lighthouse Service fleet, disappeared during the “White Hurricane” storm in the Great Lakes in 1913. A year later, the body of Chief Engineer Charles Butler floated to the surface, but the bodies of other crew members were never found.