New commanding officer to take helm of Coast Guard Cutter Maple

KODIAK, Alaska — Lt. Cmdr. Fred Seaton will relieve Lt. Cmdr. Daniel Gray as commanding officer during a formal change of ceremony aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Maple in Sitka Thursday at 5 p.m.

Gray has commanded the cutter Maple since June 2009. Gray’s next assignment will be at the Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Va.

Seaton is arriving from the Seattle-based Coast Guard Cutters Polar Star and Polar Sea. While in Seattle he was the operations officer for both cutters.

Following four years of service in the Air Force Seaton enlisted in the Coast Guard in 1992 after basic training served aboard the Coast Guard Cutter White Pine. He graduated from radioman specialty school in 1993 and served aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Decisive before being selected for officer candidate school in 1998. Some of his previous afloat assignments include the Coast Guard Cutters Bristol Bay, Sturgeon Bay and Hollyhock.

Seaton’s personal awards include three Coast Guard Commendation Medals, three Coast Guard Achievement Medals, two Air Force Achievement Medals, the Antarctic Service Medal and two Coast Guard Arctic Service Medals.

Commissioned Oct. 19, 2001, Coast Guard Cutter Maple is a 225-foot, Juniper-Class buoy tender. Their area of responsibility covers the inside waters of Southeast Alaska, ranging from the capital city of Juneau to Ketchikan. In these 1,000 miles of intricate waterways are remote villages, wildlife and uninhabited islands surrounded by the Tongass National Forrest. While on patrol the crew of Maple conducts search and rescue, fisheries law enforcement, pollution response and aids to navigation missions.

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