Great Lakes Shipmate of the Week: Petty Officer 2nd Class Troy Hall, Coast Guard Cutter Biscayne Bay

 

Hall participating in Ice Rescue Training.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Troy Hall, from Detroit, Mich. is a Food Service Specialist aboard Coast Guard Cutter Biscayne Bay, home-ported in Saint Ignace, MI. He transferred to the Biscayne Bay in June 2012 after his first active duty tour at Station Calumet Harbor.  Prior to that Hall was a member of the Coast Guard Reserve, serving as a Port Security Specialist at Port Security Unit (PSU) 309 in Port Clinton, OH.  While at PSU 309 Hall completed two deployments to Bahrain in support of department of defense operations in the Middle East.

As the Biscayne Bay’s only food service specialist, Hall is charged with planning and preparing three meals a day for the crew of 18, a duty he is truly excels at.  For Hall, proficiency in his rating means constantly trying new recipes to see what works best for the crew, and rarely making anything from a box. 

“Making things from scratch generally tastes better, costs less, and it makes it mine, something I made, so I enjoy it more,” said Hall. 

Upon reporting to the Biscayne Bay, Hall prepared meals for two months of underway operations without repeating a single meal; and most important to the crew, each of his meals was delicious.  He is tireless in his devotion to providing the best quality sustenance to the crew while maintaining fiscal responsibility and working within the confines of a tight food budget.

Hall’s famous, Gouda Stuffed Meat Loaf Burger served with Blackened Shrimp and Sweet Potato Fries.

 

Hall further distinguishes himself  by serving as the cutter’s Master-at-Arms, responsible for general shipboard cleanliness. The unit not only relies on him to plan all meals and to purchase all food for the crew, but also for ordering and stocking all of the cutter’s cleaning supplies.

In addition to these responsibilities as the Hall serves as a member of the cutter’s Ice Rescue Team.  This team of four people is responsible for conducting search and rescue on the ice, maintaining associated rescue gear, and ensuring that they maintain their qualifications. 

Always ready for an emergency, Hall is also the cutter’s Investigator for all damage control situations.  Aboard cutters, crews train daily underway for worst case scenarios: fires, flooding, toxic gas leaks, etc. The cutter’s Investigator is responsible to make rounds throughout the ship during emergency to check for additional damage.  This requires both and intimate knowledge of the ship as well as superb initial action capabilities in case additional problems are found.

Hall’s dedication to his shipmates extends beyond his physical contributions. As a Coast Guard Food Service Specialist, Hall spends the majority of his work day in the galley and on the mess deck, the central hub of any ship.  There he has become a friendly welcome sight for many on board, listening to problems and offering advice and mentoring to his junior shipmates. 

“I know that if I am feeling down about something, I can always talk to Hall and he will listen and offer supportive advice,” said Seaman David Madden.

When not on duty, it is not uncommon to find Hall with his children at a local lake or river.  An avid fisherman, he loves the Upper Peninsula’s abundance of perch, salmon, whitefish, walleye, trout, and steelhead.  The winters don’t slow the fishing down as the cutter’s Chief Boatswain’s Mate, Scott Adler, has made Hall a fan of ice fishing.

Hall is happily married to his wife, Diana, and is the proud father of four children: Alyssa, Jennifer, David, and JJ.

Whether cooking up a spicy, creamy, tortellini-sausage soup for the crew on a cold day or being out on the ice in sub-zero temperatures, Petty Officer Troy Hall is always positive and always embodies the Ninth District Ethos.  He is a fantastic cook and a great shipmate.

 

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