Julian Corrales interpret ring in the Operations Center Final ExerciseJosé Caban (070-01-10), Julian Corrales (070-06-07), Raul Fernandez-Calienes (070-06-03) and  Brian McArdle (054-03-03) assisted in the Tradewinds 2013 training exercise held  St. Lucia for the U.S. Military’s Tradewinds 2013 for 15 days. 

Tradewinds 2013, in its 29th year,is a U.S. Southern Command-sponsored annual exercise conducted in the Caribbean Basin designed to improve responses to regional security threats.  This year’s joint, combined interagency exercise was held in St. Lucia inMay  2013.  

sé Caban interpret ring for LT. Simon Nuñez of the Dominican Republic NavyThe security cooperation exercise focused on Peace Keeping Operations (PKO), cooperation among Caribbean Nations and Counter Illicit Trafficking Operations through law enforcement and basic maritime operations. More than 200 exercise participants from the United States & 14 partner nations from the Caribbean Basin, took part.  In addition, cutters from the Dominican Republic, Trinidad and Tobago and United States participated in the exercises.

Caban, Corrales and Fernandez-Calienes assisted in the exercise by Interpreting in classroom and hands on training.   Interpreters were on hand to provide simultaneously translation to Spanish which assisted in personnel getting the same lessons and instructions in real time. Brian McArdle in front of USCG Cutter Oak.

Fernandez-Calienes also was the Instructor for the Human Rights Session and conducted Domestic Violence Awareness Training that all participants were required to take.  McArdle, who is also the Director of International Affairs, supported the Administrative Team.  Grace Hirigoyen (070-06-03) assisted with orders, scheduling and expenses in Miami.

Some of the topics conducted in the classroom, in the field and on the water were: Coxswain Training, Weapons, Engineering, Operations Center, Communications, International Law Fundamentals, Raul Fernandez-Calienes conducting a Domestic Violence Awareness TrainingBoarding Procedures, Damage Control, Volumetrics, Pursuit Tactics, SAR, ICS and other subjects.

“This was a great event for the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary to participate in,” said Fernandez-Calienes.  “This was a great opportunity to provide a worthwhile service for our military while intermingling with our partners in the Caribbean.”   The USCG members who participated were recognized for their professionalism and knowledge.   Mission accomplished.




 Posted 23 February 2014 


Interested in Volunteering?

In the Interpreter Corp of the US Coast Guard Auxiliary or participating in the International Affairs Department? Find out more from Brian McARdle, Director of the The International Affairs Department. This Video was produced at the National Conference of the US Coast Guard Auxiliary (NACON) by the Public Affairs Department.

February 23, 2014


On December 19, 2013 David Alexandre received an unexpected call from the United States Coast Guard and was asked if he could proceed to Puerto Rico and assist the Coast Guard with several Haitian Migrants on one of their cutters. Alexandre received the call since he is a member of the USCG Auxiliary and a qualified Interpreter. The Lieutenant Commander who called Alexandre realized it was during the Christmas holidays, but there was a tremendous need to have a person on scene to assist in the processing of migrants. The next day, Alexandre arrived in Puerto Rico and found that he had to fly on to St. Croix. “I learned that my flight out of Puerto Rico was to be on a U.S. Coast Guard Helicopter,” commented Alexandre. “I was totally in awe when I heard this, since I have never thought of flying in a helicopter in my life. “Once everyone was strapped in, and the flight pre-checked was done, off we flew to St. Croix. It will be ride I will remember for a lifetime!”

Upon arriving on a Coast Guard Cutter in St. Croix, Alexandre was immediately brought to the Captain to be briefed on the migrant’s situation and how to proceed. At this time he also learned they had Cubans and a St. Lucian onboard as migrants. “It was a long night of processing and fingerprinting migrants and for the next two days I was with the migrants I gave them all the pertinent information that they needed to know,” continued Alexandre. “ I instructed them about how they need to behave on the cutter, answered all the numerous questions they had, helped feed them, and I even assisted one of the Coast Guard officers with a young Haitian girl who had a seizure and was hyperventilating.”

On the third day, Alexandre and the migrants were transferred to another U.S. Coast Guard Cutter. Arriving onboard, Alexandre was once again brought to the bridge to brief the Captain, Executive Officer and the Chief Boson Mate regarding the Haitian migrants and was asked to interpret for additional questioning of these migrants.

“Although I missed the holidays in Connecticut, on Christmas Day the atmosphere was festive aboard the Coast Guard Cutter,” stated Alexandre. “We all wished each other Merry Christmas and I had a chance to call my family. The Food Specialist outdid herself that day by serving turkey with all the trimmings, and even the sea was calmer than usual.”

On the day the special deployment was over and after leaving the Coast Guard Cutter and a ‘job well done’,

Alexandre found himself in a rainy Key West Florida. While standing on the rainy pier calling for a taxi to bring him to the airport, a car stopped and the driver said “I’ll bring you to the airport”. It was the Captain of the Cutter.

David Alexandre in St. Croix after his ride on a Coast Guard helicopter 

David Alexandre in St. Croix after his ride on a Coast Guard helicopter

Posted 24 February 2014 


Articles relating to Auxiliary International Affairs:

Navy Times - "Auxiliary linguists offer global resource" by Susan Schept

April 12, 2010