Maritime Safety and Security Team Houston celebrates new building at Ellington Airport

Capt. Jeff Randall, Atlantic area chief of operational forces and Lt. Cmdr. Steve Morris, commanding officer of Marine Safety and Security Team Houston, cut the ceremonial ribbon to officiate the official opening of the new MSST Houston facility Feb.17, 2016. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Elizabeth Abbott)

Capt. Jeff Randall, Atlantic area chief of operational forces and Lt. Cmdr. Steve Morris, commanding officer , cut the ceremonial ribbon to officiate the official opening of the new MSST Houston facility. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Elizabeth Abbott)

HOUSTON — Coast Guard Maritime Safety and Security Team Houston celebrated the official opening of their new building at Ellington Airport with a ribbon cutting ceremony Wednesday morning.

The MSST Houston facility was built next to the recently opened Coast Guard Sector Houston-Galveston building, which now hosts three separate Coast Guard units.

“We’re here to recognize this amazing facility; MSST Houston’s new home,” said Lt. Cmdr. Steve Morris, the commanding officer of MSST Houston.

The team, previously known as MSST Galveston, moved from Harborside Drive in Galveston — where they had been since the unit was established in 2002.

“It all started in 2008. Hurricane Ike came through this region and flooded much of Galveston Island. The old building on Harborside was not exempt from the damage. On scene within the first 72 hours after Hurricane Ike, were the deployable specialized forces. I believe this showcases the adaptability and scalability of the people you see here that represent the deployable specialized forces,” said Morris.

MSST units are a deployable harbor and inshore patrol and security team that provide antiterrorism protection for strategic shipping, high interest vessels and critical infrastructure around the country.

“To be a part of this awesome crew, that gets to stand up MSST Houston, has exceeded my dreams and my expectations,” said Morris.

The celebration included a ribbon cutting, followed by cake, punch and tours of the new building.

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