Kauaians reap top USCG honors

The “Best in the State” and the “Best in the Neighbor Islands” awards went to Kauaians recently when the U.S. Coast Guard held its state awards banquet recently.

Jim Jung and Phil Ayala were named the United States Coast Guard Auxiliarists of 2006 during the banquet on O‘ahu.

According to a press release, the award is given to the individuals who best serve the boating community and the U.S. Coast Guard. More than 300 members compete for these annual awards.

Jung was presented the Coast Guard District 14 award for being the best overall auxiliarist in the State of Hawai‘i, Guam and Saipan. Ayala was presented the Division 3 award for his outstanding efforts in all the Neighbor Islands.

Rear Admiral Sally Brice-O’Hara, Commander of the 14th Coast Guard District and District Commodore George W. Burkley lauded the awardees’ services and dedication to safe boating at an awards ceremony held at Hickam Air Force Base on O‘ahu last weekend.

“Demonstrating initiative and energy, the pair contributed more than 2,000 hours in support of every Auxiliary program,” the press release states. “This includes public education, vessel safety checks, distribution of safe boating literature, presentations to civic organizations, fingerprinting and document verification of boat captains and training fellow auxiliarists in seamanship and search and rescue.”

In addition to the award, Jung was cited for his participation in search and recovery efforts following the breach of the Ka Loko Reservoir Dam.

The United States Coast Guard Auxiliary is a uniformed civilian volunteer organization committed to support the missions of the active duty Coast Guard with the exception of law enforcement and military operations.

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