Coast Guard Cutter Elm holds change of command ceremony

5th Coast Guard District NewsFORT MACON, N.C. — Lt. Cmdr. Mark Palmer took over command of the Coast Guard Cutter Elm from Cmdr. John Kennedy during a change of command ceremony here, Friday.

Palmer reported to the Elm following a 10-month assignment as the commanding officer of the Coast Guard Cutter James Rankin homeported in Baltimore, Md.

A native of Seattle, Palmer enlisted in the Coast Guard in April 1980 and has served in numerous afloat and ashore units.

The Elm is the fourth 225-foot Juniper class seagoing buoy tender and was launched in January 1998.

The primary mission for the crew of the Elm is the servicing of more than 230 aids to navigation ranging from the North Carolina and South Carolina border to Shark River Inlet, N.J. Secondary missions include fisheries law enforcement, illegal migrant interdiction, search and rescue and marine environmental protection.

During the Deepwater Horizon oil spill response, the crew of the Elm was deployed to the Gulf of Mexico where they assisted with oil-skimming operations and earned a unit citation for serving with distinction.

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