Many comment, when they see me on land, as opposed to in the air or on a vessel, about my bright red shoes.  Thinking its a fashion statement, there is a grin and often a wish, that deep down, the viewer wishes he or she could wear red shoes with their Hugo Boss or Tommy Hilfilger suit.

While my bright red shoes have become a trademark; they began during OPSAIL 2000 with a security discussion in the office of the USCG Commander in Norfolk.  He was concerned his “assets” might not all realize who I was, or that I had clearance flying inside the security perimeter of the USCG Eagle with my helicopter or later, approaching the tall ship on the James River, via a chartered launch.

So, taking a page from the White House security, as press members are assigned a differing colored lapel pin, with the color only revealed the morning of the visit, I pointed to my then Red Nike’s and saId, “Commander, notify your people to look for the RED SHOES.”

And so it was..and it is to this day. I fly with red or as in this photo, “USCG Orange” shoes. 

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