- Associated Press - Sunday, December 25, 2016

CAPE MAY, N.J. (AP) - More than 300 U.S. Coast Guard recruits are being placed with dozens of families in New Jersey as part of an annual tradition known as Operation Fireside.

The American Red Cross for 33 years has united host families with the recruits at the Coast Guard Training Center in Cape May on Christmas and Thanksgiving.

Capt. Owen Gibbons, the commanding officer of the training center, says that the generosity of host families means that the recruits will be able to celebrate the holiday in a way they’ll never forget.

The training center is the service’s only facility that transforms volunteers into enlisted personnel during a 53-day program of exercise, drills, and studies from 5 a.m. until 10 p.m., seven days a week.

Many of the young adults are away from home for the first time.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM. You will need to either create an account with Spot.im or if you wish to use your Disqus account look under the Conversation for the link "Have a Disqus Account?". Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

 

Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide