GOD i trust you, ya know what I’ve been through 🙏🏾🫶‼️ #AFRASGoldMedal

Coast Guard Rescue Chester R. Bender Award

On 15 January 2006, Station Cape Disappointment received a third party report
on VHF-FM 16 that the 50-foot fishing vessel CATHRINE M was disabled
with three people on board and drifting towards the breaking surf in Peacock
Spit, Columbia River Bar. The unit immediately dispatched the Coast Guard
motor lifeboat (MLB) 47248 and the MLB TRIUMPH to provide assistance.
Upon reaching the scene, boatswain’s mate David Ramsey aboard CG 47248 recognized that the situation was much more critical than the initial report. On scene conditions were 25 to 35 foot seas with 25 foot breaking surf and the CATHRINE M had drifted into the treacherous Peacock Spit area. This area has earned the nickname “Graveyard of the Pacific” as it is the most dangerous area on the Columbia River Bar. Over recorded history an extremely high volume of vessels have been lost in this area, including the namesake, USS PEACOCK. As such, this area is normally only entered by seasoned Surfmen with years of experience on the Bar. The crew of the motor lifeboat 47248 had arrived on scene well ahead of MLB TRIUMPH which carried the experienced Coast Guard Surfman. Ramsey was faced with a difficult decision, and after consulting with both his crew and the command cadre positioned in the Cape Disappointment tower, the decision to render assistance was made. The crew of MLB 47248 briefed and prepared the deck for a dangerous “slip tow” evolution. Ramsey focused on navigating the tumultuous seas to reach the CATHRINE M to pass a towline to the stricken vessel. Under Ramsey’s leadership the crew courageously accepted the risk of working the deck for the passing of the towline. During a slip tow this is extremely dangerous due to the possibility of towline paying out uncontrollably through the MLB’s towing bitt upon attachment to the distressed vessel. Furthermore, the aft deck was being swept with large breaking seas making it
incredibly hazardous. The CG crew flawlessly took the CATHRINE M in tow on the first approach. This is a remarkable accomplishment and display of seamanship and courage, particularly considering the extremely harsh sea conditions. With the CATHRINE M in stern tow, BM1 Ramsey then concentrated on exiting the surf
zone as safely as possible utilizing the lifeboat to face the brunt of the 25-foot surf
conditions and to shield the fishing vessel. Ramsey, working in perfect coordination with his crew, expertly maneuvered through the surf zone and transferred the tow to the MLB TRIUMPH when they reached calmer waters.The crew of MLB 47248 demonstrated outstanding teamwork, expert seamanship and courage in the face of extremely challenging sea conditions. David Ramsey’s decision to send the MLB into Peacock Spit was critical given the deteriorating conditions and little room for error. The courage and unparalleled skill of David Ramsey was undoubtedly the factor in avoiding imminent loss of life and is synonymous with the spirit of the crew serving at Station Cape Disappointment — risking their lives so that others may live.

We Never Forget Sacrifice we endured for you to return home…
We carry forever #tilldeathdouspart ⚓️

“ Heroes don’t just go oversea’s they go through them! #surfman #squareup #catherinem #cathrinem “!

Boatswain’s Mate First Class Ramsey earned his Gold Medal in what he calls “the worst experience with the Coast Guard I have ever had.”
In 15 January 2006 Ramsey towed a 50-foot fishing boat from the Columbia River Bar off Oregon in breaking surf conditions, although he wasn’t qualified at that point for surf rescue. “I had a lot of confidence in myself, and definitely my training paid off in this situation,” says Ramsey
Ramsey steered the 47-foot Motor Lifeboat through 25- to 35-foot seas with 25-foot breaking waves to reach the fishing vessel. “It was almost flooded, and we had to secure the tow line,” says Ramsey.
Ramsey, who has been in the Coast Guard since 1998, says the ordeal was nerve-wracking. “I was hoping and praying that everything would go right with the crew,” he says, “because you only get one shot when you are as close to the rocks as we were.”
He says he remembers waves rising high above him on both sides as he towed the fishing vessel. “You’re in a [47-footer] pulling a 50-footer in the middle of waves like those,” he says. “Afterward, I got certified as an official Surfman, but it was the hardest way to earn my pin.”

It works

surfman374 #hustlr

2021 #surfman374 #fvcathrinem #cathrinem

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