Coast Guard Air Station Savannah holds change of command ceremony

Cmdr. Brian Erickson, right, transfers command of Air Station Savannah to Cmdr. Brendan Hilleary, left, during Coast Guard Air Station Savannah’s change of command ceremony in Savannah, Georgia. Rear Adm. Eric Jones, Commander, Seventh Coast Guard District, presided over the ceremony remotely. (U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of Coast Guard Air Station Savannah)

Cmdr. Brian Erickson, right, transfers command to Cmdr. Brendan Hilleary, left, during Coast Guard Air Station Savannah’s change of command ceremony. (U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of Coast Guard Air Station Savannah)

SAVANNAH, Ga. — The crew of Coast Guard Air Station Savannah conducted a change of command ceremony Friday at Air Station Savannah.

During the ceremony, Cmdr. Brian Erickson transferred command of Coast Guard Air Station Savannah to Cmdr. Brendan Hilleary.

Erickson served as the commanding officer of Air Station Savannah since June 2018 and has lead the unit to achieve exceptional results including a 99.7% dual B-0 readiness rate, executing more than 5,700 flight hours across 4,550 missions to include 382 search and rescue cases resulting in 58 lives saved and 66 lives assisted. Erickson guided Air Station Savannah through the unprecedented lapse in the appropriation of 2018, response to the capsizing of the M/V Golden Ray, and the COVID-19 pandemic.

The change of command ceremony marks a transfer of total responsibility and authority from one individual to another. It is a time-honored tradition, conducted before the assembled crew, as well as honored guests and dignitaries to formally demonstrate the continuity of the authority within a command.

“I am extremely proud of the accomplishments of Air Station Savannah over the previous two years. From operations confronting two historic hurricane seasons to the initial response of the capsized M/V Golden Ray, the men and women of this Air Station have proven to be the most capable frontline operators in the nation. They served with a sense of pride and enthusiasm to all of Coastal South Carolina, Georgia and North Florida.”

Erickson is transferring to Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School of Management where he will hold the position of Sloan Fellow, pursuing a Master of Business Administration.

Hilleary comes to Savannah from Coast Guard Sector Humboldt Bay, in McKinleyville, California, where he held the position of Chief of Response.

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