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Joining Englewood’s Coast Guard Auxiliary unit a rewarding experience

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Thomas Lane

By Thomas Lane

USCG Aux­il­iary Flotilla 87

ENGLEWOOD, Fla. – I had thought about join­ing the USCG Aux­il­iary for a few years, but always pushed it to a back burner, as other life activ­i­ties seemed to take a higher priority.

In 2014, I made some friends here in Engle­wood, who were active mem­bers in the local Aux­il­iary Flotilla. I was able to wit­ness their per­sonal growth in gain­ing skills, abil­i­ties and knowl­edge from being mem­bers in the Aux­il­iary. I’ve now also adopted these skills since join­ing in 2014. I’ve gained a sense of pride from pro­vid­ing valu­able life-saving ser­vices to the Engle­wood community.

I also dis­cov­ered the fun and fel­low­ship of belong­ing to a local Aux­il­iary. Flotilla 87 was com­mis­sioned in 1961 and is now com­posed of over 40 active men and women vol­un­teers, ded­i­cated to safer recre­ational boating.

Flotilla 87 respon­si­bil­i­ties include the area of Lemon Bay and Placida Har­bor between Man­a­sota and Boca Grande bridges and the adja­cent waters in the Gulf of Mexico.

The United States Coast Guard Aux­il­iary, like any orga­ni­za­tion, is a fluid entity, rely­ing upon its mem­bers to grow and sup­port its mis­sions. The Auxiliary’s aver­age age is in the mid to high 50s. By work­ing together, both the younger gen­er­a­tions and the older gen­er­a­tions can grow in expe­ri­ence, recruit younger mem­bers and truly solid­ify the Auxiliary’s role as a part of Team Coast Guard. This is def­i­nitely an orga­ni­za­tion that gives back as much as you are will­ing to put into it – and more.

Whether you want to be out on the water as boat crew, work­ing a pub­lic affairs booth, doing ves­sel exams and/or help­ing out with admin­is­tra­tive duties, your work will be val­ued and will help make a difference.”

If you are enthu­si­as­tic and will­ing to learn and help, the Aux­il­iary will pro­vide you the train­ing and oppor­tu­nity to use your skills and time to help your country.

Flotilla 87 in Engle­wood meets the sec­ond Tues­day of each month at 7 p.m. at 1949 Engle­wood Road, and vis­i­tors are always wel­come. For more infor­ma­tion and con­tact infor­ma­tion, visit the Flotilla 87 website.

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