>USCGC MAPLE in the Yards of Bellingham, Washington


We began our drydock period in Fairhaven Shipyard on the chilly afternoon of February 16. Now 43 days later, the weather is warming up, but the MAPLE still remains propped up on the blocks. Sporting customized hard hats and protective safety goggles, the crew and the contractors make great progess on the repairs and maintenance of the ship.
We just moved back onboard having spent the first 5 weeks in a Bellingham hotel, enjoying the privacy of the accommodations and meals contracted out to local restaurants. Now, as we unpack our gear into our berthing areas, the scent of paint fills our nostrils and the sound of needle guns fills our ears. Despite the conditions, we all agree it’s good to be back onboard because it means we are one step closer to home!
Several crewmembers have taken advantage of the time in the Yards and attended C schools to further their personal development. LTJG Christopher Bonner, ENS Mary Bitzer, BM1 Aaron Jenkins, and SK3 Michael Wolfe are among the many MAPLE mates who traveled across the country to attend the various training programs.
Other crewmembers took the time to celebrate personal milestones. We offer congratulations to BM2 Michael Klosterman who married Sitka native Nastasha Rabidou on the sunny beaches of Florida in March. FS2 Brittany Smith closed the month with a string of good news, first being recognized as one of the finalists for Food Service Specialist of the Year and then becoming an aunt to beautiful baby boy Jeremiah.
The crew agrees that the days of drydock are long, but the weeks go by fast. As the end of April approaches, everyone looks to finish their projects and tie up loose ends to MAPLE can return to Sitka as scheduled.