Our Guardian of the Week, Seaman Derek Luman, is the Coast Guard recipient of the 2009 GEICO Military Service Award. In its 22nd year, the program awards service members for contributions in drug and alcohol abuse prevention, fire safety and fire prevention and traffic safety and accident prevention. For someone so early in his career to receive this award is quite remarkable but Luman certainly deserves it. Just listen to his writeup from GEICO.
Derek N. Luman is the Coast Guard recipient of the 2009 GEICO Military Service Award for his work in drug and alcohol abuse prevention.
Seaman Luman is assigned to Deck Department/Law Enforcement Team, USCGC KNIGHT ISLAND, Key West, Florida. He is part of the department responsible for the maintenance and preservation of all topside spaces.
SN Luman joined the KNIGHT ISLAND in August 2008 and quickly became a qualified Boarding Team Member and has conducted more than 25 high visibility boardings including four which were classified as major drug disruptions at sea. In addition to spending a rigorous 2000 hours at sea and away from home this past year, SN Luman selflessly volunteered on more than 40 different occasions during his sparse off-duty time at Key West’s Poinciana Elementary School. Through creative “question and answer” seminars highlighting the Coast Guard’s counter-drug mission, he ingeniously linked narco-interdiction efforts at sea to the end result of keeping drugs out of schools and out of children’s hands.
The CGC Knight Island is a 110-foot patrol boat and, for those of you who don’t know, duty aboard a patrol boat is some of the most demanding in the Coast Guard. They perform virtually all of the roles of a larger cutter with just a fraction of the crew. They are often on call to be deployed within just a few hours and being in the in the Florida Straits they are busy non-stop all year. In this environment Luman has become an standout member of the crew and still makes time to talk to local students twice a week about the dangers of drug abuse.
“He’s a yes-sir, hard-worker type,” said Lt. Matthew Moyer, commanding officer of the Knight Island. “He requires no tasking and just does his job.”
But that’s not the half of it. Luman is a qualified boarding team member, something Moyer estimates less than a quarter of seaman and fireman aboard a patrol boat ever attain. Beyond that he is qualified as a junior officer-of-the-deck. “It’s a unique qualification for someone of Luman’s pay grade,” said Moyer. “As a non-rate, that’s really remarkable.”
We couldn’t agree more. Congratulations Derek!
Do you know someone in the Coast Guard that has done something great for the service, the missions or the public? Please submit your nominations for Guardian of the Week using the submit button at the top of the page.