Brady, who has served with the Coast Guard since graduating from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in 1999, said he received his orders to transfer in March. Having visited Grand Haven before, Brady said he was excited to receive the assignment.
Grand Haven “was No. 1 on our dream sheet,” he said, referring to a document used by USCG personnel to request specific assignments.
“It’s not typical for members to be able to go to two back-to-back field tours like this,” Brady said. “Usually, they send you back to headquarters for staff jobs.”
Hemp will go to the national command center in Washington, D.C. First, he will be promoted to full commander, he said.
Hemp is a native of Sidney, Ohio, and was commissioned in 1995 at the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Conn. He was attached to the Maintenance and Logistics Command in Boston, Mass., when he was assigned to the Grand Haven command to replace Lt. Cmdr. Steve Lowe in July 2008.
Having served the last three years of his 16-year career in the Coast Guard in Grand Haven, Hemp said he has gotten to know the community and staff of the SFO well.
“The community has been fantastic,” he said. “I have a great crew, and it’s been a real privilege to lead and support the crew here.”
Adding to his memories are the three Coast Guard festivals he has been a part of during his time here, Hemp said. He has worked to bring a wider variety of Coast Guard units to the festival each year, including the Atlantic Strike Team, he said.
During the 2010 Coast Guard Festival, he said, one-third of his unit was helping with the cleanup response for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. At the same time, he said his crew had made preparations to deal with any downstream effects of the oil spill in the Kalamazoo River.
Aside from the natural beauty, Hemp said he has enjoyed the company in Grand Haven.
“The people are very friendly and we’ve gotten to know quite a few,” he said.
Soon, Brady and his family will make the move to the area. Brady will receive more responsibilities in his new post, he said, and his family will become a part of the community.