Hilo, Hawaii, native patrols Arctic Ocean

Petty Officer 1st Class Vernon Batulanon, a yeoman, verifies records on the Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf in the Arctic Ocean, Sept. 12, 2012. The Bertholf is on patrol in the Arctic as part of the Coast Guard’s operation Arctic Shield mission. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Timothy Tamargo.

Petty Officer 1st Class Vernon Batulanon, a yeoman on the Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf, deployed Aug. 21 with the ship to the Arctic Ocean as part of the Coast Guard’s Operation Arctic Shield mission.

Batulanon is responsible for maintaining accurate personnel records, travel claims and orders, and is also a phone talker and plotter for general emergencies/quarters.

Operation Arctic Shield 2012 will give the Coast Guard and Bertholf an opportunity to test capabilities to ensure the right resources are available to conduct maritime safety and security operations in the region.

“The Bertholf plays a big role in Operation Arctic Shield 2012,” said Batulanon. “It shows how versatile the Coast Guard can be with all maritime missions anywhere, especially in the Arctic. But for me, being part of Operation Arctic Shield 2012 is an honor and an experience that I will never forget. We have been able to reach out to local communities to promote boating safety and are keeping our citizens safe by patrolling the Arctic.”

In U.S. waters, the Coast Guard has a responsibility to conduct its 11 statutory missions. During Operation Arctic Shield it will focus on: ports, waterways and coastal security; search and rescue; aids to navigation; living marine resources; marine safety; defense readiness; marine environmental protection; ice operations and law enforcement.

The Coast Guard is the nation’s lead federal agency for ensuring maritime safety, security and stewardship and will be a leader in the advancement of U.S. national interests in the Arctic maritime domain.

It is dedicated to ensuring the protection of the Arctic maritime environment and of all those who depend upon it.

The Coast Guard has a long and proud history of working in Alaska dating back to the Revenue Cutter Service as late as the 1860’s. Alaska Native partners are a vital part of Operation Arctic Shield and the Coast Guard values their knowledge and expertise to reach common goals.

For more imagery from Arctic Shield 2012, please visit www.cgvi.uscg.mil.

For more information about Arctic Shield, please visit: http://www.uscg.mil/d17/Arctic%20Shield%202012.asp

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