Coast Guard Day

Coast Guard

225 years

Coast Guard Day: August 4, 2015

Coast Guard Day is held every August 4 to commemorate the founding of the United States Coast Guard as the Revenue Marine on 4 August, 1790, by then Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton. On that date, Congress, guided by Hamilton, authorized the building of a fleet of the first ten Revenue Service cutters, whose responsibility would be enforcement of the first tariff laws enacted by Congress under the Constitution.

The Coast Guard received its present name through an act of Congress signed into law by President Woodrow Wilson on 28 January 1915 that merged the Revenue Cutter Service with the U.S. Life-Saving Service, and provided the nation with a single maritime service dedicated to saving life at sea and enforcing the nation’s maritime laws.

The Coast Guard began to maintain the country’s maritime aids to navigation, including operating the nation’s lighthouses, when President Franklin Roosevelt announced plans to transfer of the U.S. Lighthouse Service to the Coast Guard in May 1939. Congress approved the plan effective 1 July, 1939. On 16 July 1946, Congress permanently transferred the Department of Commerce Bureau of Marine Inspection and Navigation to the Coast Guard, thereby placing merchant marine licensing and merchant vessel safety under Coast Guard regulation.

After 177 years in the Treasury Department, the Coast Guard was transferred to the newly formed Department of Transportation effective 1 April 1967. As a result of the events of 11 September 2001, the Coast Guard was transferred to the new Department of Homeland Security effective 1 March 2002.

Coast Guard Day is primarily an internal activity for active duty and reserve Coast Guardsmen, civilian employees, retirees, auxiliarists, and dependents, but it does have a significant share of interest outside the service. Coast Guard units throughout the United States usually plan picnics and informal sport competitions together with family and friends on Coast Guard Day. In addition to celebrating their own day every year, Coast Guardsmen also participate as equal partners in Armed Forces Day activities. Grand Haven, Michigan, also known by act of Congress as Coast Guard City, USA, annually sponsors the Coast Guard Festival the week of August 4.

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Veteran’s Appreciation Luncheon

Kays-Ponger & Uselton Family of Funeral Homes and Cremation Services held an appreciation luncheon today to honor those employees who have served our nation.  We currently have 17 veterans working in our funeral homes and memorial park.  Thank you for your service.


The 6 Black Boxes | A Military Widow’s View

The below article was originally posted on The American Widow Project is a non-profit organization dedicated to the new generation of those who have lost the heroes of yesterday, today and tomorrow, with an emphasis on healing through sharing stories, tears and laughter… Military Widow to Military Widow. Thank you to Hello Grief for sharing.


6 boxes are all that is left of my husband. One filled with his socks, another with his uniforms, and another with every card or photo he had received. Three more contain his books, sheets, and other military effects.

I remember when the boxes arrived, I sat there so anxious to see what was left of my baby. Opening each one I had no clue what I would see. Cautiously, I lifted the lid of the hard black containers.

There are the cards I wrote him, there are the movies he’d watch every night, there are the photos of me he had hanging next to his bed………there is the only thing left of my husband’s existence while in Iraq.

I remember opening up his laptop to find an snapshot of me I never knew he liked. There was the bear that had the personal message I had recorded telling him I can’t wait to see him come home and be together again. There were all the things I had sent, all the memories on film we had captured, all the literature he adored reading, now with no reader.

I forgot all that he had accumulated over his 8 months over there. Due to that fact, many items were so heartwarming but always with an aftertaste of anger.

I remember going through his clothes and immediately putting them to my nose……detergent. ‘I’ll try another shirt or maybe his socks!’ …….detergent. The fact that they had washed all of his clothing made me so infuriated! Let me have one last breath of his smell. The smell I was unable to be without for 8 months…..and now forever.

Some of Michael’s things I pulled out right away, others are still sitting in those looming boxes sitting in my garage. Every now in then I’ll open them to get a small inhale from his pillow that they DIDN’T wash, or go for a search for some hidden letter he may have written in the case he would die.

I never found the letter, I never got my husband to come home, and all I am left with are our memories, a few items of meaning and………6 black boxes.


Flag Retirement Program

“When it come to the time when I am old and faded, do not fly me in disrepair, rather retire me from my duties only to replace me with a new flag so that I may continue to symbolize our country.”

The flag of our nation should always be a strong, vivid symbol of our land and fly brightly in our minds.  Our flag is a symbol of our people, our freedom and our strength.

We have partnered with local Veteran’s groups to collect retired flags and cremate them in the most dignified manner, with a veteran.  This is done with honor as part of our commitment to the men and women who fought under the flag of our country.  YOU MAY DROP OFF RETIRED FLAGS AT ANY KAYS-PONGER & USELTON  OR LEMON BAY FUNERAL  HOME LOCATIONS OR GULF PINES MEMORIAL PARK.

If you would like to establish a Flag Retirement Program for your Veterans of Foreign Wars Post of American Legion Post, email us at or


Honor Flight 3rd Annual Car Show

One of our very own, David Obermier won “Show Favorite” with his 1980 Kawasaki LTD 1000!  Great job David!!