Brandon Alan Spence graduated on Jan. 20, from a 14-week school at the U.S. Coast Guard Training Center in Yorktown, Va.,
Training for boatswain’s mate is accomplished through 14 weeks of intensive training at Boatswain’s Mate “A” School.
During training, Spence was exposed to many facets of the boatswain’s mate rating, including marlinspike seamanship, navigation, and practical exercises underway.
A boatswain’s mate’s job duties include operating small boats; storing cargo; handling ropes and lines; directing work of the deck force, performing navigation of ship’s steering; lookout supervision, ship control, bridge watch duties, visual communication and maintenance of navigational aids. Boatswain’s mate is the most versatile rating in the Coast Guard, and the only rating that can lead to a command position.
During the graduation ceremony, Spence was recognized by the master chief of the school for his perseverance.
Spence was the first recipient of this recognition in “A” School and was presented a “bosun” pipe, which is a longstanding maritime tradition, showing faith in ability and leadership.
Spence’s five-year career in the Coast Guard consists of his basic training in Cape May, N.J., followed by a two-year period in which he served as a law enforcement officer at the Coast Guard shipyard in Baltimore. Prior to his boatswain’s mate training, he served at the small boat station in Elizabeth City, N.C., where he will be returning.
Spence is a 2003 graduate of Bradley Central High School and is the son of Troy and Kimberly Spence, of Cleveland.
He is the grandson of Carol and the late Bill Spence and Anthony and Joyce Stafford, also of Cleveland. He is married to Karen Scott-Spence (also serving in the U.S. Coast Guard), and the father to twin daughters, Oliviah Raegan and Savanna Reece.