Topics: Coast Guard

CHATHAM — Concerned about the ability of crews from Coast Guard Station Chatham to respond to emergencies during high surf, selectmen voted this week to send a letter to Washington for clarification of a recent decision to downgrade the unit from a surf station to a “heavy weather station.” On Monday, station commander Senior Chief Boatswain’s Mate Carlos Hessler was before the board of selectmen to answer q...

CHATHAM – With shoaling creating difficulty in accessing the inlets in Chatham Harbor, the Coast Guard is looking for an alternative location for its rescue vessels that will provide greater flexibility. The agency has suggested creating docking space at the town-owned Old Mill Boatyard on Stage Harbor for its two 42-foot lifeboats. Currently, two of the vessels are docked at the municipal fish pier in Aunt Ly...

CHATHAM — It’s not exactly business as usual at Coast Guard Station Chatham, but when it comes to their core missions – search and rescue, maritime security, law enforcement and environmental response – they are, as always, ready to respond during the partial government shutdown. While the funding lapse does not affect most branches of the military, the Coast Guard is under the Department of Homeland Securit...

CHATHAM – The home of the most famous surfboat crew in the history of the Coast Guard is no longer a surf station. As of Dec. 10, Coast Guard Station Chatham's designation was changed from a surf station to a heavy weather station. That means crews can only respond if surf on the bar is under eight feet, said Senior Chief Petty Officer Carlos Hessler, the officer in charge of the station. “That's the only c...

CHATHAM – The home of the most famous surfboat crew in the history of the Coast Guard is no longer a surf station. As of Dec. 10, Coast Guard Station Chatham's designation was changed from a surf station to a heavy weather station. That means crews can only respond if surf on the bar is under eight feet, said Senior Chief Petty Officer Carlos Hessler, the officer in charge of the station. “That's the only c...

CHATHAM – If the frigid temperatures aren't enough to remind you that the holiday season is here, then Santa's arrival on Sunday should do the trick. The Jolly Old Elf will cruise into the fish pier at 1:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon in style, aboard the historic CG36500 Coast Guard lifeboat, accompanied by a contingent of active Coast Guard personnel. The event, sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Central Cape Cod, i...

CHATHAM — Until about a decade ago, Andrew Fitzgerald, Jr., was known to most of his family and friends only as a loving man with a keen wit, a retired sales engineer, a volunteer at his church and an avid football fan. And way back in his youth, he had been in the United States Coast Guard. What they didn’t know was Mr. Fitzgerald’s role in the greatest small boat rescue in Coast Guard history. He was th...

Hessler Glad To Take Helm At Coast Guard Station Chatham

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — The new man in charge at the Coast Guard station, Senior Chief Petty Officer Carlos Hessler, said he’s impressed by the sense of pride at Station Chatham as well as its role in the community – and its place in history. Hessler has been the station’s commanding officer for a few weeks now and is still getting to know its people, its unique equipment and its role in the local network of first responder...

CHATHAM – Boaters anticipating accessing waters along the town's eastern coast by the usual routes this summer may have to change their expectations. “Delete last year's GPS” settings, Coastal Resources Director Ted Keon recommended. Even though they haven't had a chance to explore inlets, navigation channels and popular boating spots in detail because of the weather, officials say that the storms that play...

CHATHAM — When mariners in distress call Coast Guard Station Chatham, more often than not, there’s a volunteer on the other end of that lifeline. While the local flotilla of the Coast Guard Auxiliary provides all kinds of support for the station, it also provides a team of qualified watchstanders who answer the telephone and monitor the marine radio for emergencies. And these volunteers, with varied backgrou...

For many people, the tale of the Pendleton rescue is the stuff of big-budget feature films; for others, it's the story of the greatest small-boat rescue in the history of the Coast Guard. But for Renee Pellegrino of Maryville, Ill., it's part of family lore. Pellegrino recently made a 1,000-mile pilgrimage to the Cape to honor her father, the late Raymond Steele, who was one of the 32 men rescued from the ster...

CHATHAM — Even as loved ones gather today to remember Matthew Amsler as a friend, a son, a husband and a father, questions remain about how his remains went undetected for months, just feet from where he was last seen alive. On July 30, a crew from Coast Guard Station Chatham was practicing a law enforcement boarding on the retired CG44301, a rescue boat on display on the front lawn, when they found Amsler's...

Body Found Inside Coast Guard Boat

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — Investigators say foul play is not likely a factor in the death of a man whose decomposed remains were found inside the rescue boat on display at the Coast Guard station Sunday. But they're eager to learn more about the death, and how it apparently went undiscovered for months under the noses of officials at the most visited, photographed site in town. On Monday, the Cape and Islands District Attor...

This past weekend US Coast Guard officials spent more than four hours scouring the waters off Plymouth looking for a possible person in the water after finding an adrift kayak. While the search was eventually suspended and no missing persons reports filed, indicating that the vessel likely floated free of its mooring, the situation is a powerful reminder that even paddle sports such as kayaking, canoeing, and sta...

When officials receive a call for help from a boater in trouble, the problem isn't a lack of responders; typically, the Coast Guard, harbormasters from several towns and police and fire boats get underway. A new system being put in place this summer aims to streamline and simplify the way town resources are dispatched by the Coast Guard. The system involves a smartphone app used by town harbormasters, police o...

Death of 'Capt. Dave' Murdoch Stuns Waterfront

By: Alan Pollock , Kat Szmit

CHATHAM — Captain Dave Murdoch was an easily recognizable figure in the town of Chatham, between driving along in his blue Jeep with its American flag waving in the wind and walks with his dog Gordon. Now, friends and fellow mariners are mourning the death of the 78-year-old, whose remains were found near the southern tip of North Beach Monday afternoon. Investigators do not yet know how Mr. Murdoch died, bu...