Coast Guard Enlists Newest Recruit, Buddy the Dog

Beneath a billowing American flag and light breeze off the harbor, Buddy sat in salute at the U.S. Coast Guard Station Menemsha early Monday morning, chest proudly puffed, ready for his next treat.

The three-year-old golden retriever was sworn in as a seaman recruit by Senior Chief Jason Olsen at a special enlistment ceremony. With the duty crew standing behind him, Buddy became a rank and file member of the Menemsha team.

Full Heart and Hearty Appetite Exemplified Coasties’ Best Friend

With Menemsha falling away behind and the open sea ahead, the U.S. Coast Guard boat headed due west three miles off the coast of Aquinnah Wednesday afternoon. Then the engine was cut. The sun sank in the blue November sky as officers lowered the flags to half-mast and gathered on deck to say goodbye to one of their fondest shipmates, Bridger.

It was a committal service at sea fit for a commander. Coast Guard Station Menemsha crew members said goodbye to their mascot, Bridger, a yellow Labrador who died on Sept. 22 from complications of old age. He was 12.