A Chatham 44' MLB prepares to cross the Chatham Bar
Station Chatham is one of 20 designated Surf stations in the Coast Guard. Harking back to the days of the United States Life-Saving Service, a Surfman is a consummate Coast Guard boat coxswain. Through years of specialized training and experience, he or she is intimately familiar with search and rescue planning, operations and equipment. Surfmen are trusted to operate the most seaworthy craft in the Coast Guard inventory in extreme weather conditions. Their motto, coined at the turn of the twentieth century underscores their commitment: "The book says that you've got to go out, but it doesn't say a word about coming back".
Much like their counterparts at other stations nationwide, Surfmen typically stand duty or recall 84 hours a week. These 161 Surfmen make up the smallest operational specialty in the Coast Guard today. Dubbed "storm warriors" and "surf soldiers" at the turn of the 20th century, these men and women are the core of what the Coast Guard calls "‘the soul of the service"- Coast Guard Boat Forces.
For more information on our Surf Program please contact Senior Chief Boatswain's Mate Holm 1st District SOSTAG Representative.
For more on the history of Surfman and the Surf Program please visit the National Motor Lifeboat School Website.