Lima 194 Recruit Journal Week 06

International Maritime Signal Flag Lima

Lima 194 Recruit Journal

Formed: April 25, 2017

Graduates: June 16, 2017


The Epic Tale Of Lima-194

Week 06 Summary

The day really began towards the end. It was Lima 194 against petty officer Loeffler. The recruits went through an evening unlike any other. As the rain fell from the sky, Petty Officer Loeffler sent the recruits up and down ladder wells, hold sniper position until their shoulders went numb, pass sea bags along the quarterdeck until the collective sweat and body heat fogged up the glass from within. After a shower drill of 180 seconds, the recruits thought they were safe, enjoying what little mail and prayer time they had left, the recruits returned to their racks, the evening was tough, the incentive training left them sore. But at least it was over right? Wrong! Petty Officer Loeffler woke anybody and everybody up out of the slumber, and the recruits were lined up in main muster, confused, having no idea or want was to happen, Petty Officer Loeffler instructed the recruits to don full gortex and head outside. The night was dark, and the recruits were statues as the heavy rain poured down upon them, chilling them to the bone. They waited with their arms stretched high, as Petty Officer Loeffler walked outside, his only protection from the rain being a windbreaker. The recruits followed Petty Officer Loeffler as he led the recruits along a trail, their boots sloshing through puddles of mud and water, the recruits pushed on trying to keep up. The trail twisted and turned and the rain fell harder. The darkness formed a wall, threatening to devour them all. The ground went from dirt, to pavement, to sand as the recruits ran out onto the bench. Falling into formation, Chief Heinze was waiting for them along the shoreline. Chief Heinze gave a speech explaining how Lima-194 had to become a better company, and how there were people out there right now who needed our help. The tides rose, and waves crashed around him as he instructed Lima-194 to about face. He asked them if they saw anything they wanted, and there it was, the colors of Lima-194 blowing in the wind. Chief Heinze ordered them to go get it. A new found energy flowed through the company as they charged up the hill to retrieve the flag, holding it high they shouted the coast guard ethos with morale flowing through their veins. Chief Pullen and Petty Officer Botts joined the company as they marched back to the house, singing cadence, daring to wake up everyone on the regiment. Finally, returning to their racks, the recruits felt empowered, inspired, and committed. Through an unforgettable experience, they had earned their colors. However, they could lose them at any time of any day. Would they keep their colors flying or have them taken away?


A majority of the next day was spent at Golf Hall. The recruits learned the fundamentals of firearm safety, how to hold the firearm correctly, controlling the recoil, how to clean them, load and unload them. Petty Officer Loeffler was waiting for them at dinner chow, when things started to go south for Lima-194. People weren’t communicating properly, moving too slow, failing to answer simple questions, signing out whenever they wanted, and company Petty Officers not doing their job. Petty Officer Loeffler had a plan coming in today, to go to the gym, ride the bikes, pump some iron, maybe have evening routine. But things don’t always go according to plan. After some incentive training with their pieces, the recruits filled the quarter deck. As time went on it was evident that Lima-194 still had much room for improvement. Records of counseling were passed out once again flying in the wind. Shipmate Moy and shipmate Davis tried to take charge but to no avail. The beatings resumed, and they will only stop once Lima-194 is the loudest, fastest company on the regiment. Whether its shipmate Moy, shipmate Davis, or Petty Officer Loeffler taking charge, Petty Officer Loeffler will always get what he wants.


Tuesday was devoted to administrative time. The recruits were able to get in contact with their sponsors, and ask any questions that came to mind. They also looked up information on their unit, finding out deployment destination, when they would stand duty, missions they had to accomplish, and available living quarters. The recruits then went to the uniform distribution center to be refitted into their dress uniforms, and to correct any errors or damages. In addition to what they already had, the recruits had the coast guard ball cap in their possession, but have yet to earn the right to wear it. The entire evening was down at the range, being about to apply what they learned to live fire. Shots rang throughout the range as the rounds hit the targets with deadly precision. Empty shell casings lying on the deck and magazines empty. The recruits were anxious to know if they had earned another pennant for Lucille, the newly named Lima-194 guidon. They would find out soon enough.


Another day nears its end, a day closer to graduation as Lima-194 completes the last day of May. Lima-194 lost 04 recruits today due to the dark fate of the probation belt. Also, 07 recruits felt a weight lifted from their shoulders as their belts were taken off. Only 03 recruits still carried the burden. Week 06 comes to its halfway point. The recruits gather more information about their units, purchase plane tickets, and make travel arrangements. Career counseling and completing the first unit reporting guide also fell on the schedule. That afternoon Chief Heinze and Chief Pullen ran the company through the manual of arms and close order drill movements, sharpening their precision. The evening consisted of the company learning about the dangers of hazing and how to do graduation preparation. The addition of the marksmanship pennant still fresh on the guidon, the company marched around the regiment singing a brand new cadence to close down the night. Looking forward to coffee the next morning, Lima-194 prepares for tomorrow.


Following all safety guidelines is a necessary in the coast guard. The recruits learned this valuable lesson today as they were taught about the importance of safety sheets, personnel protective equipment, and tag out labels. That afternoon the recruits were informed of the different ways they could move household goods. Lima-194 was found at the track that evening with Petty Officer Loeffler, but not without participating in an incentive training session, bringing the days without getting beat count down to zero. Different positions were handed out for watch standers and all the jobs for graduation support. It would be another test for Lima-194, to see if they were up to the challenge, and could take the pressure. Whether or not they would rise to the occasion would be entirely up to them.


The next morning began at medical with Lima-194 receiving shots. The same immunizations flowed through their veins from forming week. Soon after the recruits used more administrative time while others stood their watches during graduation support. Another graduation completed. Juliet-194 has left the building as Lima-194 takes custody of their squad bays. The recruits were also able to plunge into the depths of the pool, swimming 50 meter sprints. Their muscles toned from the workout. The recruits learned how to set short and long term goals as well as goals pertaining to physical fitness. Later that evening the Pullenator had the company go through the manual of arms and close order drill test. He watched them carefully, instantly correcting any mistakes he witnessed. The days grow closer and closer as Lima-194 continues to prepare for the test in week 07, but first they had to keep their military bearing for on base liberty.


“60 seconds everyone get on line in main muster!” the ever familiar order gave life Lima-194, as the recruits were a blur across the quarter deck ready to await the next order. Chief Heinze briefed the company on the cell phone policy and the rules of on base liberty, stressing the importance of having a squared away uniform, and not messing up. The recruits used the time they were given to prepare for yet another test. They shined boon dockers and low quarters, ironed their blouses and tropical dress uniforms, cut their belts and removed all loose threads. After lunch the recruits were led on an operational tour, boarding cutters such as the USCGC Crocodile, learning about life aboard a cutter and asking any questions that came to mind. Then it was time for the test. After six weeks of being apart the recruits were reunited with their cell phones. Eager to learn of any news they missed out on, the recruits set off for the exchange, ready to obtain any sweets, hygiene products, or uniform items they desired. Shortly after, the recruits headed over to the Harborview Club, where they would finally be able to contact their loved ones, play some pool, take a break from galley food, enjoy each other’s company, and recharge their batteries. Upon returning to the house, Lima-194 turned in their phones, and settled into evening routine. After reading and writing mail and saying their prayers, the recruits returned to their racks awaiting their test results.


Breaking into the holiday routine, the recruits squared away everything in sight. Racks were made, hospital corners were set, uniforms were pressed, and everything was put into rightful place. Also taking the time to write letters back home, keeping in touch with family, after lunch Lima-194 was dressed out in physical fitness gear ready to run 03 miles with Mike-194 and Kilo-194. Exiting the base, civilians cleared the way for the unstoppable force that is the coast guard. Cadences were sung from start to finish, the only thing moving faster than their feet was the rise in morale. Later on the recruits learned of different Coast Guard heroes such as William Flores. We learned that whether you’re a non-rate fresh out of boot camp, or a petty officer with years of experience, anyone can make a difference. The Service Dress Blue uniform was also tried on today, embedding pride in the recruits, as the low quarters shined in the light. Evening routine began on time but not without consequence. Chief Heinze had random people selected to pay for their fellow shipmates mistakes. For every petty mistake, and lapse in military bearing Chief Heinze witnessed, he selected 10 random people to pay for their mistakes. All while the shipmates at fault spent Evening Routine listening to their shipmates getting destroyed, with the knowledge that their mistakes were to blame, and in the fleet could get someone killed. One by one other shipmates volunteered to partake in the sharing of pain. Week 06 may be ending, but week 07 is just beginning. The standards don’t get easier; the rules don’t change, and will remain the same all the way till graduation.



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.


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