Great Lakes Shipmate of the Week: Seaman Lyndsey Slabe, STANT Saginaw River, Essexville, Mich.


SN Lyndsey Slabe prepares to toss a heavy line during boatcrew training.

Seaman Lyndsey Slabe, a Magnolia, Texas, native, reported to Station/Aids-to-Navigation Team Saginaw River, in Essexville, Mich., in October 2011 after completing basic training at Coast Guard Training Center Cape May, N.J. As her current unit’s name implies, it plays a multitude of roles in the maritime community on the Great Lakes.

Slabe currently holds the title of leading seaman at STANT Saginaw River, and as such, has the responsibility of ensuring that the unit’s seamen are properly trained and increasing their proficiency. Always seeking out new opportunities and challenges, she has been appointed the assistant rescue and survival petty officer and assistant boatkeeper on the station’s 41-foot Utility Boat.

Offered a glimpse of her future as a marine science technician, SN Slabe pauses while inspecting a storage tank.

As the assistant rescue and survival petty officer, she is responsible for the issuance and maintenance of her unit’s rescue and survival gear. In addition to normal station equipment, she maintains the personnel protective equipment related to the unit’s Ice Capabilities Center of Excellence, which trains ice rescuers from the Coast Guard and other agencies.  (Click here to learn more about the ICCE training.)

Conducting routine maintenance on an aging 41-foot UTB as an assistant boatkeeper is yet another duty in which Slabe excels.

“Every project completed by her is immaculate, said Petty Officer 1st Class Justin Abold, Slabe’s department head.

During the station’s last ready for operations evolution, Slabe’s hard work and dedication resulted in zero discrepancies for the Deck Department. She worked countless hours to make sure the unit’s assets were inspection ready.

Slabe quickly obtained certifications as a communications watchstander, ice rescuer, boarding team member, and crewmember aboard the unit’s 24-foot Special Purpose Craft-Shallow Water and 41-foot UTB. Demonstrating drive and initiative, Slabe earned these certifications well before all assigned deadlines.

Aside from her own certifications, she holds evening training sessions to ensure that her shipmates earn their certifications. Due to her knowledge and hard work, all of the station crewmen are now fully qualified.

“She is an outstanding role model to shipmates and a valuable asset to our unit,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Ryan Sayers, a coxswain at STANT Saginaw River.

“Slabe is a good player to have on your team,” said Abold. “She is the one you want on your team because she never gives up. Slabe strives to be proficient in all of her duties. This is what makes her such an excellent shipmate.”

Slabe is currently on the waiting to list to attend marine science technician “A” school. She desires to become a marine science technician to help protect natural resources and the environment.

Outside of work, Slabe uses her time to enjoy her unique pet, Ringo, an 8-foot Burmese python.

“I was a little intimidated by him at first,” said Slabe.  “After owning him for over a year, I have realized that he is the calmest pet I have ever owned. I feel safer around Ringo than any other pet I have owned,” said Slabe.

Physical fitness, more specifically long distance running, is a passion of Slabe. She has run in two Houston Marathons, 5k mud runs, and has run competitive cross country for six years.

“She is fast!” said Seaman Joseph Lobosky.  “It seems like the world around her slows down while she is running.”

As a reward for her hard work and dedication to the Coast Guard, Slabe was recently recognized by her peers as STANT Saginaw River’s Sailor of the Quarter for 4th Quarter 2012.

SN Slabe assists BM3 Larry Williams with preparing STANT Saginaw River’s 41-foot Utility Boat for another year of service on the Great Lakes.

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