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Press Release | April 14, 2023

Coast Guard Sector Charleston conducts change of command ceremony


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CHARLESTON, S.C. — The crew of Coast Guard Sector Charleston conducted a change of command ceremony, Friday, at The Citadel Beach Club.

During the ceremony, Capt. John D. Cole transferred command of Coast Guard Sector Charleston to Capt. Francis J. DelRosso.

Cole served as the commander of Sector Charleston since May 2020 and oversaw maritime safety, security, and stewardship operations along the coasts of South Carolina and Georgia which included 925 search and rescue cases resulting in 499 lives saved and 881 lives assisted. Cole guided Sector Charleston and numerous outlying Coast Guard units through several hurricane responses, the unprecedented salvage and removal of the capsized motor vessel Golden Ray in St. Simons Sound, Georgia, and the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It has been an honor to serve here over the past three years,” said Cole. “I am especially proud of the accomplishments of all our Coast Guard members across South Carolina and Georgia, and thankful for all the great work of our local partners in the Charleston region, our state agencies and officials, as well as our federal agency partners and those across the maritime industry. Together, we have ensured the maritime safety and security of the Lowcountry.”

Cole is transferring to the Coast Guard Seventeenth District in Alaska where he will hold the position of chief of staff.

“I am truly honored to serve alongside the maritime professionals in South Carolina and Georgia, and I look forward to working collaboratively to maintain regional maritime safety and security,” said DelRosso.

Capt. Francis J. DelRosso comes to Charleston from Coast Guard Sector Miami, where he held the position of deputy commander.

The change of command ceremony marks a transfer of total responsibility and authority from one individual to another. It is a time-honored tradition, conducted before the assembled crew, as well as honored guests and dignitaries to formally demonstrate the continuity of the authority within a command.

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