Knoxville, Tenn., native travels to Arctic on national security cutter

Petty Officer 2nd Class James Claude corrects charts on the Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf in the Arctic Ocean, Aug. 27, 2012. Using charts enables a ship to stay current on changing ocean environments and allows the ship to steer clear of navigational hazzards. The Bertholf is on patrol in the Arctic as part of the Coast Guard’s operation Artic Shield mission. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Timothy Tamargo.

Petty Officer 2nd Class James Claude, a boatswain’s mate 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.

Claude is responsible for maintaining accurate charts for navigation and is also part of the helicopter tiedown team aboard the ship.

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.

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

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