Marine Safety Unit Port Arthur holds change-of-command

HOUSTON – Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Port Arthur held a change-of-command ceremony in Beaumont, Texas, Friday.

Capt. Jason Smith, Sector Houston-Galveston commander, presided over the ceremony as Capt. Molly Wike relieved Capt. Jacqueline Twomey as commanding officer of Marine Safety Unit Port Arthur during a change-of-command ceremony. Rear Adm. John Nadeau, Eighth Coast Guard District commander, presided over the retirement ceremony of Capt. Twomey.

Capt. Wike was previously assigned as the deputy commander of Sector Ohio Valley. In this position, she led over 400 personnel, three marine safety units, two marine safety detachments, as well as six river tenders, providing maritime security, search and rescue, marine safety, and environmental protection for over 8,000 miles of navigable waterways on twelve major rivers.

Capt. Twomey retired after 26 years of service to the Coast Guard. Her previous assignments included Coast Guard National Towing Vessel Center of Expertise detachment chief, Marine Safety Unit Port Arthur executive officer, prevention department head for Sector New Orleans, an analyst for the Coast Guard’s Strategic Transformation Team, and assistant senior investigating officer and marine inspector for Activities Europe.

Marine Safety Unit Port Arthur personnel inspect commercial vessels, respond to pollution incidents, investigate marine accidents, manage waterways and license merchant mariners for an area of responsibility that extends north to the Texas/Oklahoma and Arkansas borders to 200 nautical miles south in the Gulf of Mexico, including the nation’s third-busiest petrochemical port complex.

The change-of-command ceremony is a time-honored tradition and deeply rooted in Coast Guard and Naval history. The event signifies a total transfer of responsibility, authority, and accountability of the command.

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