Southern California Coast Guard unit and member earn Pacific Area awards

SAN PEDRO, Calif. — The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Narwhal and Petty Officer 2nd Class Matthew Mahaffey, a marine science technician stationed at Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach, will be presented with Pacific Area awards at the Coast Guard Foundation dinner to be held August 4, 2009 in San Francisco.

Cutter Narwhal, homeported in Corona del Mar, Calif., was given the Admiral John B. Hayes Award for Unit Excellence for their superb operational performance throughout 2008. Cutter Narwhal was commended for conducting 189 recreational boardings and issuing 163 violations for unsafe operations. Narwhal was also praised for their counter-drug expertise which led to the seizure of approximately 10,000 lbs of marijuana with a street value over $32 million. Earlier this year, Cutter Narwhal also earned the 2008 Coast Guard Educational Unit Partnership Award in recognition of their aggressive educational outreach initiative to local schools and community.

Petty Officer Mahaffey was awarded the Admiral James S. Gracey award for professional excellence. Petty Officer Mahaffey investigated 75 percent of Sector Los Angeles – Long Beach’s violation cases and acted as a lead investigator for highly sensitive cases. Petty Officer Mahaffey, a native of Pasadena, Calif., currently resides with his wife Jessica and two children.

The Coast Guard Foundation is a non-profit organization that enhances the education, welfare and morale of all Coast Guard members and their families. The Foundation is governed by a Board of 100 Trustees from all parts of the country. Over the past three years the Foundation has contributed $12.3 million in cash and in-kind gifts for an average total of $4.1 million annually in support of the men and women of the Coast Guard and their families.

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