Romeo 189 Recruit Journal: Week 05

International Maritime Signal Flag Romeo

International Maritime Signal Flag Romeo

Formed: April 8, 2014
Graduates: May 30, 2014


Like a hurricane begins with a single drop of rain, Romeo – 189’s near perfect day was shattered by a single forgotten laundry bag. One of our shipmate’s dirty laundry didn’t get collected. This led to missed time objectives amongst the chaos. The consequences started to spiral out of control. After fire! Fire! Fire! We hit the quarterdeck to discuss Romeo 189’s issue while in the sniper position. Amongst the dripping sweat we came to a conclusion. Insubordination and disrespect has been holding us back. Some shipmates when to RAMP while others racks were placed on the quarterdeck to sleep and for more attention from the CC’s. In some ways we have been successful but when a shipmate falls behind, there are some hurt feelings and frustration tonight. If we want to earn our place as a senior company then we need to pull together.

06MAY 14

They say the “days are long and the weeks flyby” here at basic training. Today was a long day for Romeo – 189. Hours were spent at the uniform distribution center getting sized for our dress uniforms. Long lines, total silence and no chairs can wear out the most prepared recruit over time. Though warned repeatedly a shipmate succumbed to sleep and found himself in Sierra – 189. We have learned quickly that the threats from our chain of command are not just empty threats.


A week has almost passed since Romeo – 189 put in their dream sheets. Official orders are starting to trickle in, however Senior Chief Ashley won’t give us the news until all the orders have been received. Although he continues to taunt us as we walk by the Company Commander table in the galley asking which district we wanted etc., It’s entertaining and we enjoy playing the guessing game as well. Senior Chief Ashley taught us how to wear our shirt stays today in a unique and memorable way. One of our shipmates had to change into dress shoes, dress socks, PF shorts, and a short sleeve tropical blue long shirt to ensure both male and female could learn at same time. Needless to laughter was hard to conceal


After much anticipation and speculation, Romeo – 189 received their orders. For some of us the excitement is hard to contain, for others its discontent. Although for most part, everyone is ready to move forward and make the best of their first assignment. There was a diverse range of assignments ranging from Coast Guard Cutters, to Aids to Navigation Teams, Small Boat Stations, A school assignments and destinations such as FL, AK, MS, WA, HI, NJ, VA, TX, and CA. Though very excited Romeo must stay composed and stay focused on immediate goal which is graduation.


It wasn’t even 0900 which 03 section commanders (infamous red ropes) stormed into Romeo – 189’s squad bay. Improperly stowed gear was being launched in every direction. Failed required knowledge, and rack inspection earned time on the quarter deck. Those with multiple issues found them self in Sierra – 189. On our walk to Healy Hall the resting place for senior companies it was mixed emotions. Excited for a fresh start in a new building but anticipation for the fear of just a minute mistake would afford us the opportunity to join those in Sierra – 189. Fortunately we had a lull amongst the sea of chaos in which a group for Senior Chiefs and Master Chiefs from around the fleet talked with us about our new jobs and new units.


Romeo-189 woke up blood thirsty today. Our first order of business was Pugil sticks. War in the arena armed Romeo recruit had the chance to settle squad bay feuds. Shipmates call out shipmates to a challenge of a possible beat down. The anger and frustration of 05 weeks living in close quarters with different people was all we needed to find the motivation to give 100 percent. After the battle royal we moved on to what is suppose to be a confidence builder, the Confidence course. Romeo recruits scaled walls, climbed rigging, flipped over bars, and climbed up ropes. The feeling of accomplishment was over whelming when we swung high above the ground reaching for the bell to ring it. When all the activated were over we thought boot camp was resuming and we elated to get 03 hours of Q and A time with our mentors. Today was a good day for Romeo we learned the Coast Guard operates mainly on teamwork and communication.


Romeo made the long muggy trek down to Goff Hal today. After an exhausting weekend dehydration snuck up on a lot of us. We fought back our tiredness to ensure our switch out from the plastic fake M-16 to the Real colt M-16 went smoothly. The real M-16 is much heavier than the other and PO Martin made sure we all were made well aware of this fact with a little Piece “IT”. Next was the even Romeo had been waiting for all week the off base 5k. We formed up behind PAPA and Quebec companies, marched out the gate and sang along to our Company Commanders cadences. Even the Battalion Officer sang a few for the Company. Along with the cadences it was a sight watching the civilians line up and show appreciation to us as volunteer into the World’ s top maritime military. We never thought of how we would be received after training if the treatment during the run is a taste we all cannot wait. We really felt like a senior company out there and cannot wait for next Sunday.

Editor’s Note: This blog post was written by a recruit currently involved in Coast Guard basic
training. The thoughts and opinions expressed in this Journal do not necessarily reflect those of Training Center Cape May, the U.S. Coast Guard or the federal government and are the sole opinion of the author. Recruit Journals are written by personnel in a high-stress environment with little time, so please excuse grammar and punctuation in the above article. The staff at Training Center Cape May do not edit the journals in any way, so as to ensure authenticity of the content and messages.