An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew returns to Air Station Kodiak, Alaska, to transfer a patient to emergency medical personnel after hoisting him from a cruise ship July 22, 2015. The 83-year-old man was suffering from symptoms of a heart attack aboard a Holland America cruise ship requiring a medevac for immediate medical attention. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Lauren Steenson.

Achieving new heights: Alaska-qualified aircraft commander

With an extensive 44,000 miles of shoreline, Alaska has the largest area of responsibility of all the Coast Guard districts, it also has incredibly diverse landscape and weather patterns, making it uniquely challenging for mariners and aviators.