Uniform 194 Recruit Journal Week 06

International Maritime Signal Flag Uniform

Uniform 194 Recruit Journal

Formed: July 11, 2017

Graduates: September 1, 2017



Uniform 194 took care of business this week from getting wisdom teeth pulled out and learning how to properly handle and shoot firearms. Not at the same time of course, because that would be pretty intense. Every day a new challenge came up, so let’s gets started on how Uniform woke up and conquered the day.

The week started off with U-194’s first taste of something other than Training Center Cape May. We ventured off into Cape May for the company run circling a majority of downtown Cape May. While we got to perform as a company, sing some Coast Guard songs I believe the real highlight of the run was the hundreds of people lined up on the side of the roads watching, taking pictures, and cheering for the Coast Guard. It gave Uniform 194 a sense of pride and an eye opening experience that this truly is bigger than us. Those people on the side of the streets looked at us in a way many have not been seen before because of the Coast Guard emblem on our chest, it was a great way to start an exciting week.

People will often tell you that you change during boot camp, and they’re not wrong. Before boot camp the dentist was the worst place to go, but if you spend 06 weeks here and that changes quickly. I’ve never seen a group of guys so excited to get teeth yanked. It was confusing at first until it was discovered that you can’t eat anything but ice cream, pudding, or apple sauce. Recruits were praying that they had to get teeth pulled. All jokes aside the dental team was fantastic. The procedure was quick, and not that painful. Yes there was discomfort and it was hard to eat at times but for the most part everything ran smoothly.

Our days at the range went better than expected as a decent amount of shipmates had never handled a firearm. The training that the Gunners Mates offered was second to none both in the classroom and at the range. Everything from trigger discipline, muzzle control, to hitting your intended target was covered. While U-194 was not able earn a firearms pennant due a new training set up all shipmates showed up and showed out putting on an incredible performance. It gave you a taste for what is to come next in getting firearm qualified in the fleet.

A majority of time this week was allotted for us to contact our first duty stations and begin to set up the start of our Coast Guard careers. Everything was being covered from housing, to general duties upon your cutter, small boat, or station. It began to feel as if we were finally starting to become part of the fleet. Our new sponsors and stations welcomed us with opened arms answering any question we had no matter the parameters, it truly made you know you were wanted and needed in the fleet.

Finally, we ended the week with something both our shipmates and families have been waiting for, on base liberty! It gave us recruits time to unwind, relax, and enjoy some much needed sweets and fried food, while our families could get their first glimpse at their newly reformed loved one. The amount of pure joy that filled the room at the Harbor View Club could be seen from the second you walked in. The smiles, voices filled with excitement, and tears of joy were evident in the 06 hours we had to ourselves. The staff at the Harbor View was top notch filling food orders quickly and showing kindness most have not seen while at the training center. While we got to enjoy some alone time with friends and family, really on base liberty was a big test to see if you could be given an inch and not take a mile. In my personal opinion I believe Uniform 194 did an excellent job. From the second we walked out of those Harbor View doors it was game on, you could have heard a pin drop across the room. It was the quietest Uniform has been in our 06 weeks here, with us wanting to show our Company Commanders that we could enjoy ourselves and still fall back into the military mindset once the fun was all said and done.

Usually Sundays are filled with lounging around with family watching some football, not for Uniform 194. This Sunday marked one of the biggest days in Uniform’s brief history. We started the day with some divine hours to tidy our racks, and send out some of the last letters we will be writing before reuniting on graduation day. After divine hours we got to enjoy something everyone recruit looks forward to, pugil sticks! Each recruit got their chance to battle it out with each other and test our will as we strapped up entered the arena. What a blast it was to see the competitive nature in all the recruits. Following the eventful pugil stick bouts we had our weekly Sunday night “fun run”. We paraded around Cape May again with several locals and tourists cheering us and the Coast Guard on. It is truly a humbling feeling to run down the streets to cheers of U-S-A, U-S-A from the many bystanders.

Upon completion of our run, Petty Officer Hardy asked Uniform one simple question. How motivated are you? What this meant we had no clue, but we were ready. Off for another run we went. Upon arriving at our normal running destination we continued to march and banged a left instead of taking our normal right. In front of us we could see the dune grass and hear the ocean waves crashing. One behind another we filed it onto the beach forming up just in front of the crashing waves. Were we going into the ocean? Were we here to admire a beautiful Cape May sunset? No. Instead we got on our face, back to our feet, back to our face and assumed the push up position. Doing pushups until we were called to get on our backs and start crunching. We continued the workout with air squats, flutter kicks and a quote that has motivated Uniform since we have received it in the mail. It reads: “We do this job because every once in a while someone is out there without hope, desperately praying for their life, and we get to be the answer.” After this quote was read Petty Office Hardy explained a little of just how much the Coast Guard means to her and ordered the company to about face. There it was what we had all been waiting for, our company colors! All the sweat and hard work that this company has put in had finally earned Uniform the company colors. Upon seeing the flag, the entire company charged it and pig piled on top of each other as chants of “Uniform” rang on the beach.

What a memorable end to an incredible week here at Cape May. Until week 07, stay safe and keep us in your thoughts.



  • SR Tiner, SR Jones, SR Russo


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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