ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Coast Guard Cmdr. Charles Miller assumed command from Cmdr. Samuel Jordan during a time-honored military tradition to formally transfer command of the Coast Guard Cutter Resolute, a 210-foot Reliance class cutter, at Sector St. Petersburg, Friday.
The change of command of a naval ship is unique in that it is a transfer of total responsibility, authority, and accountability from one individual to another. The change of command ceremony, though not specifically prescribed by Coast Guard regulations, is part of a rich heritage of seafaring customs. Parading all hands at quarters and public reading of the official orders stems from the early days when movement of mail and persons was a slow process. This procedure was designated to ensure that only authorized officer held command and that all were aware of the transfer of authority.
The Resolute is a 210-foot Reliance class cutter and has a crew complement of 12 officers and 68 enlisted personnel. Medium endurance cutters like the Resolute are built for multi-week offshore patrols including operations requiring enhanced communications, and helicopter and pursuit boat operations, which provide a key capability for homeland security operations at sea.
The Resolute was one of the many Coast Guard assets to respond to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in April 2010. The Resolute served as a search and rescue asset as well as a hurricane guard for more than 60 vessels and crews working to stop and contain the spill. It also served as a platform for Coast Guard aircraft operations in support of the spill.
On May 31, 2012, the Resolute crew offloaded 168 bales of cocaine worth more than $135 million seized from four separate drug interdictions during a patrol in the Western Caribbean.