Coast Guard to establish new Ancient Keeper and conduct change of command

First Coast Guard District NewsBOSTON -The Coast Guard will pass the torch of the Ancient Keeper during a change of watch ceremony Thursday, 11 a.m., at Coast Guard Station Castle Hill in Newport, R.I.

The title of Ancient Keeper recognizes a Coast Guardsman with outstanding performance and longevity of service in boat forces operations. The title is in honor of Coast Guard legend Captain Joshua James, who is credited with saving more than 600 people during his lifetime.

Chief Warrant Officer Thomas J. Guthlein, the commanding officer of Station Castle Hill and current Ancient Keeper, is retiring after a distinguished Coast Guard career. Guthlein started his Coast Guard career in the reserves in 1978 and has been on active duty since 1982. He received a commission as chief warrant officer in June 1998.

During the ceremony, Master Chief Petty Officer James M. Clemens will be named as the new Ancient Keeper. Master Chief Clemens, a native of Canton, North Carolina, enlisted in 1985. He is currently the Officer In Charge of Coast Guard Motor Lifeboat Station Umpqua River in Winchester Bay, Oregon. Guthlein is the fourth person in the service to bear the title of Ancient Keeper.

Chief Warrant Officer John M. Roberts will become Coast Guard Station Castle Hill commanding officer in a change of command ceremony prior to the Ancient Keeper Change of Watch ceremony.

Current Coast Guard Ancients are:

Gold Ancient Mariner – Adm. Robert J. Papp Jr.
Silver Ancient Mariner – Master Chief Petty Officer Lloyd Pierce
Ancient Albatross – Vice Adm. John Currier
Enlisted Ancient Albatross – Senior Chief Petty Officer Peter MacDougall
Ancient Keeper – Chief Warrant Officer Thomas Guthlein

For more information on Ancient Keepers click here

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