Skip Navigation Links

Leading From the Front: CGC MIDGETT Summer Assignment

Stefanie Senkow
October 7, 2021

1/c Lillian GoebelNEW LONDON, Conn – It was a large exercise in Pacific waters—and First Class Cadet (1/c) Lillian Goebel was aboard USCGC MIDGETT to experience it. Goebel’s cutter wasn’t supposed to patrol near the Russian Navy, but it was redirected to Hawaiian waters to do so during her summer assignment.

“To help with the border protection missions, CGC MIDGETT was instructed to provide a front,” said Goebel.

Goebel got qualified as Quarter Master of the Watch (QMOW) five days into her assignment. She acted immediately during this mission.

“Three cadets and I were the only ones standing QMOW during this period. We had to be attentive and on alert. We were under orders from the Department of Defense to patrol until the Carrier Strike Group 1 arrived in the area,” said Goebel.

When the Navy vessels started patrolling close to the Hawaiian Islands, Goebel’s Command and shipmates encouraged her confidence.

“It was imperative to maintain a military presence and not show weakness. Everyone on the bridge made me feel welcomed and if I was unsure about certain tasks I would just ask for clarification. I did not do anything to mentally prepare, I just trusted those above me. I went to my duty hours confident which contributed to the success and safe navigation of CGC MIDGETT,” said Goebel.

Thankful for a supportive Command, Goebel’s once-in-a-lifetime summer experience solidified her eagerness to serve in the fleet and start a career in the Coast Guard.

“When you are underway things can rapidly change depending on the missions asked. In this case, we were supposed to be departing for Alaska, however, we were the closest vessel to front a U.S. presence to the Russians. The mission comes first in protecting our boarders. We are in the military and sacrificing is what we do to serve our country,” said Goebel.