Coast Guard continues recruit training following evacuation

Coast Guard Training Center Cape May NewsJOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, N.J. – U.S. Coast Guard recruits who evacuated from Coast Guard Training Center Cape May, N.J., resumed training to become Coast Guardsmen Monday at 5:30 a.m.

More than 268 recruits resumed their rigorous basic training program despite being evacuated to Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in response to Hurricane Sandy. Training center staff must keep the training of the recruits on track in order to meet personnel demands of Coast Guard units worldwide.

“This may be the first hurricane response in our recruits’ Coast Guard careers, but it will certainly not be their last,” said Capt. Billy Kelly, the commanding officer of Training Center Cape May. “This is what we do; when things are at their worst, the Coast Guard is at its best.”

Recruits started the morning with physical training and piled into classrooms for more than eight hours of scheduled instruction. Training staff deployed with the recruits to teach them everything from military customs and courtesies to first aid. Administrative personnel also deployed with the recruits in order to process travel and transfer orders for the graduating companies.

“Our ability to continue training in the face of Hurricane Sandy is a testament to the flexibility and dedication of our staff and recruits,” said Kelly.

Coast Guard officials at Training Center Cape May are monitoring the storm’s progress and are constantly evaluating its impact on the training schedule. Officials will release information about scheduled events such as graduations following a post-storm assessment of Training Center Cape May.

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