Coast Guard cutter Cypress welcomes new commander

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The Coast Guard cutter U.S.S. Cypress has new leadership after officials held a ceremony for the changing of the guard on Aug. 3.

The change of command ceremony is a tradition for the U.S. Armed Forces. It serves as both the formal exit ceremony for the outgoing commanding officer and the introduction for the new one. 

The Cypress’ crew as well as both commanding officer’s families attended the ceremony aboard the Coast Guard cutter, August 3, 2023. (Brian Venua/KMXT)

Commander Daniel Davis has led the Cypress for the last two years. He said one of his favorite parts serving on the ship was living in Kodiak. 

“I would have stayed in Kodiak indefinitely if I could have,” he said. “Unfortunately, our commanding officer jobs are just hard stops, you can’t really stay any longer – it’s time for you to go on to different jobs. We loved Kodiak – Kodiak welcomed us as a family and made us feel like family and we just had a great time here.” 

He said some of his favorite memories on the island include projects with 4-H, a youth agricultural organization, like raising livestock. 

Davis applied for other jobs on Base Kodiak to stay in the community, however he accepted a promotion that has him and his family transferring to Juneau. He said he’s looking forward to living in a little bit bigger city. 

“I think the one thing that’s interesting is the variety – there’s a little bit more variety of things to do, but we will definitely miss Kodiak,” Davis said. “I think this is as good as it gets, so we’ll see.”

Commander Daniel Davis inspects the Cypress’ crew’s uniforms for the last time. Behind him, Lieutenant Commander James Toohey, August 3, 2023. (Brian Venua/KMXT)

Cmdr. Davis is succeeded by Lieutenant Commander James Toohey. Toohey served in Kodiak from 2018 to 2020 on the cutter Spar. He spent the last two years in a civil engineering job with the Coast Guard in Virginia. 

He said he was excited to make the move back to the archipelago. 

“My tour here was unlike any other that I think I’ve seen,” Toohey said. “It’s just so welcoming to all the families around here. And all of the outdoor activities, it’s amazing. It’s unlike any place else, so my whole family, (when) we left, we were hoping we’d get the chance, and thankfully the Coast Guard made it happen.” 

Toohey said he’s looking forward to getting to know the crew and exploring Alaska’s coastlines for another tour.

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