Coast Guardsman Re-Enlists on Ice


DETOUR VILLAGE, Mich. — A San Diego native and 11-year veteran re-enlisted in the Coast Guard Thursday while the crew of the cutter she is currently assigned to was conducting ice rescue training, as the ship was moored in Detour Village.

Petty Officer 1st Class Erin Hunter is a health services technician aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw, a 240-foot icebreaker homeported in Cheboygan, Mich., but just received permanent change of station orders to the Coast Guard Cutter Healy, a 420-foot polar icebreaker homeported in Seattle.

Hunter's re-enlistment ceremony was conducted the same day the 9th Coast Guard District warned of warm temperatures across the Great Lakes region, which are raising concerns for unsafe ice conditions.

"It's customary for enlisted Coast Guardsmen to come up with fun and interesting ways to conduct re-enlistment ceremonies," said Hunter.  "So, I requested to re-enlist during a break in the crew's standard ice rescue training."

"But, we made sure we took all the proper safety precautions before venturing out onto the ice."

Hunter’s career has spanned six units, including the Coast Guard Cutter Hamilton, which was homeported in her hometown of San Diego prior to its decommissioning in March 2011. Hunter started her Coast Guard career in August 2001 and graduated from Coast Guard Training Center Cape May, N.J., in October 2001.

Her military decorations include one Coast Guard Commendation Medal, the Coast Guard Commandant’s Letter of Commendation and four Coast Guard Meritorious Unit Commendations.

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