Maritime group honors Coast Guard and Auxiliary

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The Association for Rescue at SeaonTuesday awarded its gold medal to the Commandant of the Coast Guard and its silver medal to the National Commodore of the Coast Guard Auxiliary.

AFRAS members decided to award the medals to the whole of both organizations “for the extreme competency and outstanding heroics” each exhibited before, during and after hurricanes Rita and Katrina, according to a news release. “A vast majority of these men and women performed these actions while knowing that their own homes and families had also been devastated by Rita and Katrina,” the release says.

AFRAS usually awards its gold medal to an enlisted member of the Coast Guard for “an act of extraordinary bravery during a rescue at sea,” the association says. Likewise, AFRAS awards its silver medal to a Coast Guard Auxiliarist.

AFRAS also presented $5,000 checks to Coast Guard Mutual Assistance and Operation Life Ring, organizations that come to the aid of enlisted men and women who have experienced personal loss, according to the release.

The Coast Guard Auxiliary Association and Soundings Publications recently signed an agreement to help promote boating safety and homeland security throughout the United States. Under the agreement, Soundings will publish the association’s public education class schedules, encouraging boaters to become better educated and safer on the water.

—Jason Fell