Life aboard HSV 2 Swift: Rey Tinoy’s story

The following blog post was originally published in the August 2012 edition of SEALIFT, a Military Sealift Command newspaper publication. During the month of September, we will be highlighting regular blog posts from the mission as APS 12 concludes in Africa.

By MC1 Martin K. Wright

Rey Tinoy is the civilian boatswain aboard Military Sealift Command-chartered high-speed vessel Swift (HSV 2). As one of the contract mariners working for MSC, he’s worked and lived on Swift since 2008, longer than any of the military detachment personnel currently aboard. After serving as an able bodied seaman for 15 years, he made the step up to boatswain, feeling he had more to contribute.

As the boatswain, he helps to ensure the maintenance and upkeep of the ship. Since Swift makes frequent port calls and hosts many receptions, that maintenance is more detailed than most merchant ships. It’s the upkeep that takes a majority of Tinoy’s time in port.

But it is getting in to port that provides the most visible part of Tinoy’s job. He helps make sure the mooring lines are secure and the ship docks safely, laying alongside refrigerator-sized bumpers to keep the ship from pounding against the dock.

Tinoy said on most merchant ships the work is usually solitary, so he enjoys working on the Swift and getting to know the Sailors and Marines aboard. He said, “It’s very rewarding going with the Sailors. It’s different than a regular ship; I get to interact with them.”

Being aboard Swift and supporting Africa Partnership Station has added a deeper level of satisfaction, said Tinoy, “It’s very important that nations the ship visits are good at providing security.”

Tinoy plans to stay with Swift until the contract with the MSC ends, and he hopes it will be extended so he can stay longer.

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