How UTR supports Coast Guard Ohana

August 3, 2022

The United States Coast Guard is celebrating its 232nd birthday on August 4, 2022. United Through Reading wishes all Coasties a Happy Birthday! To celebrate, we spoke with Chief Warrant Officer Sean Campbell aboard the USCGC Kimball about his experience bonding with his children through reading, no matter their distance, and why UTR is a great program for all Coast Guard families.

CWO Campbell is often underway at sea, supporting national security operations as an electronics material officer. He discovered United Through Reading amid the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 when he first reported to the USCGC Kimball.

Campbell said, “my new roommate on the cutter told me about this program, and I was blown away by this unique method to be able to remain grounded and connected to my boys while on deployment.”

CWO Campbell is the proud father of Mason (12) and Liam (7). Their family is currently stationed at USCG Base in Honolulu, Hawaii. They love island life, but their favorite United Through Reading memory is about land animals. Campbell explains, “my youngest son loves the ‘Elephant and Piggie’ book series, and every time he reads them to me, he has the biggest belly giggles, and it seriously melts my heart every time.”

United Through Reading has more than 200 Story Stations around the world, including at several USCG bases, and our free app, which is the fastest way to get started. In addition, United Through Reading staff members will be on the USCGC Northland later this month to assist crew members in making recordings for their loved ones.

“I would highly suggest UTR for families deployed because the Coast Guard is a family-oriented service and this tool helps keep the Coast Guard member connected to those back home. While on deployment, it gives you just a few minutes to be able to connect with your children and those who you most love,” explains CWO Campbell.

The Campell family will be celebrating the Coast Guard’s birthday away from each other this year. “My wife is USCGC Kimball’s Unit Ombudsman and helped coordinate Kimball’s families to connect with each other on the beach in Oahu,” Campbell explains. Meantime, he’ll be preparing for a significant career accomplishment, a qualification to become an Underway Deck Watch Officer. On the USCGC Kimball, CWO Campbell is looking forward to “a variety of nautical activities and celebrations we’ll do together as one Ohana!” On the Hawaiian Islands, Ohana means family!

We look forward to supporting the United States Coast Guard family, or ohana, in their 232nd year of service!