PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY)- The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bear returned to Coast Guard Base Portsmouth Tuesday morning after sailing more than 10,000 miles during its 74-day deployment.
The North Atlantic deployment took the Cutter Bear as far north as the Arctic Circle.
“I think it’s significant in that the Coast Guard is becoming a little more expeditionary,” Commander Brooke Millard said. “We’re going a little further than we’ve gone before in order to support our partners and allies.”
It was Millard’s first deployment as Captain of the Cutter Bear. After servicing 20 years in the Coast Guard, she said the deployment is a meaningful culmination of her career thus far.
The crew participated in Operation Nanook, an elite Canadian Armed Forces exercise. It also hosted Alan Leventhal, U.S. Ambassador to the Kingdom of Denmark.
The crew participated in exercises with the French, Italian and Dutch navies.
“We did a lot of crew transfers, and I would just say that they are pretty incredible professional mariners. We learned a lot from them, and I’m so thankful they’re on the U.S. NATO team,” Millard said.
As crews reunited with their families, Ensign Richard Rodriguez met his nephew, Sebastian for the first time.
“I heard when we were back in Greenland that he was born,” Rodriguez said. “Luckily I was on land at the time so I was able to call my sister and I got the rundown. I’ve been waiting for this day for a long time.”