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Greg Hitchen was a high-ranking officer of the United States Coast Guard who assisted in spearheading emergency response during Hurricane Sandy. Because of his elevated status and role in the operation, Mr. Hitchen was able to provide a larger perspective on the activities of the response. His place as an officer in the Coast Guard's command structure also allows him to contribute an incredible amount of detail into specific episodes of the storm. He became a member of the United States Coast Guard in 1983 and, until recently, has been on active duty. Because he was raised outside of the New York City area, he was able to provide an “outside view” with a unique and larger perspective on the entirety of the Coast Guard’s response to Hurricane Sandy. Mr. Hitchen was able to survey the broader integration of different parts of the USCG during the storm response because of his command role.
CWO-3 Troy Loining is a member of the Coast Guard who was out in the storm during Hurricane Sandy. Chief Loining grew up in northern Minnesota by Lake Superior, one of the Great Lakes. While there, he discovered his passion to become a part of the US Coast Guard, as he thought the job description was something he would be successful at while also enjoying it since the Coast Guard had ideals he both agreed with and believed in. Chief Loining has been stationed in Virginia, Washington D.C., Maryland, New Jersey, and Staten Island, where he is currently stationed. In the interview, Loining states he was stationed in Sandy Hook at the time of Hurricane Sandy and explains how they prepared, which began with evacuating all residents of Sandy Hook. Chief Loining then states that all non-essential equipment was to be moved elsewhere so it was not damaged or destroyed. This order included cutters and other aquatic vessels, as they had to be moved up the Hudson River and dry-docked, so they were not damaged or destroyed. He states that most of the Coast Guard personnel at the station had to evacuate with the civilians, as it was ordered that all personnel that were not essential to the command center was to evacuate the area. During the aftermath, Chief Loining assessed the damage to the town, which was destroyed.
When he was younger, Petty Officer Brian Dove was a member of the Boy Scouts, and, after meeting many members of the military during this time who he admired, was inspired to join the military himself. Dove ended up enlisting in the Coast Guard after recognizing that his personal values and the Coast Guard missions aligned with each other perfectly, and never looked back. He has been a member of the United States Coast Guard for about 15 years and has been serving in New York City for 6 years. He was stationed at Fort Wadsworth during Sandy, and while he was not a direct witness to the devastation of Sandy and did not personally lose very much to the storm, he oversaw the resources at the Coast Guard’s disposal while in the command station and directed what goes where.