The 4th of August is the Birthday of the United States Coast Guard. Happy Birthday! The Coast Guard will be 232 years old. They were established a long time ago in 1790! What in the world did they do to keep busy? They only had ten ships then but they were given the mission to enforce Federal tariffs and help prevent smuggling. Coast Guard members have served in 17 wars or conflicts throughout U S History.

Who was the oldest serving member of the Coast Guard? Anthony Christy. Who is he you ask? He was the Lighthouse Keeper of the Christiana Lighthouse in Delaware. He died while on duly in September 1862. By the way he was 105 years old! Now that was one old crusty Coastie.

Is the Coast Guard a Military Service? No and Yes. Since 2003 they have been operating as part of the Department of Homeland Security. In wartime they revert back to the Department of Defense.

The first Coast Guard Cutter, the “Valiant,” was launched in 1791. Today this refers to ships that are over 65 feet long. The first permanent Coast Guard Air Station was established at Camp May, NJ in 1926. The oldest Coast Guard Boat Station is Sandy Hook, NJ. In 1967 the Coast Guard started painting “Racing Stripes” on its vessels. These Red Slash Design or Stripes are now well known on their ships.

The motto of the Coast Guard is “Semper Paratus,” meaning “Always Prepared.” They were surely prepared in WWII. Did you know that almost a quarter of a million Guardsmen served in the USCG during WWII?

President George Washington commissioned the first Coast Guard Officer, Captain Hopley Yeaton on March 21, 1791. Many years later the first two uniformed women joined the Coast Guard in 1918. Two sisters, Genevieve and Lucille Baker, were the first females in the USCG.

Now you know more about the USCG than 99% of the people in the USA and the world! Good knowledge. Enjoy the August Heat. Go down to Port A for a vacation. There is a Coast Guard Station at Port A. This Coast Guard Station is real near a great old beer joint called “Shorty’s.” I think that this place has been there since 1946. Drop by and tell the “Coasties” thank you for their service.

It is starting to get hot and humid. It must be July. This month and next month are usually a couple of pretty warm months around here. The Lazy Hazy Days of Summer. Everything starts to slow down a little. Thank the good Lord that we have working A/C units in our houses and vehicles.

Can you imagine the days, back in the 40’s and 50’s in Dripping Springs, before A/C? Think about the houses, the places of business, the churches. What about sleeping at night with the windows open wide to let in just a slight breeze. The summers had to be brutal in those days. We are actually pretty lucky to be living in these days.

So what is going on in July in Dripping Springs? Everyone knows about the 4th of July, INDEPENDENCE DAY. 246 years ago, the original 13 colonies declared independence from Britain. As would be expected this started a war. You might even call it an “insurrection.” That’s what happens when the people start getting a little upset with the way things seem to be going. Oh well, you know how the story ends. Just be happy that we have the freedoms that we do have now. We are very lucky to live in a wonderful country, a wonderful state, and a wonderful community. Fly your flags. Teach your children and grandchildren about the story of our Independence. Go shoot some fireworks or go watch a fireworks display. Count your blessings, for they are many.

We have very few Korean War veterans left among us but if you know any please give them thanks for their service during the Korean War in 1951-53. It was a messy and miserable war that ended, not in a victory, but with an Armistice. Now, 69 years later, we still have a divided country and we still have almost 30,000 U.S. Troops stationed in South Korea. Anyway, on the 27th of July 1953 we signed an Armistice to end the fighting in the Korean Conflict. It is a day that we remember and a day that we honor our Korean War Veterans. We thank them for their sacrifices.

Have a great and enjoyable summer!