Weston police Sgt. Michael Ferullo was honored by the U.S. Coast Guard with a 2012 Reserve Family Readiness Award.
The award is presented by the Department of Defense (DOD) and recognizes National Guard and Coast Guard Reserve units that demonstrate outstanding family readiness while maintaining superior mission readiness.
Sgt. Ferullo accepted the award in his capacity as Commander of Port Security Unit (PSU) 305 of the Coast Guard Reserves.
During a ceremony at the Pentagon, Sgt. Ferullo, his daughter, Laura Ferullo, and the unit’s ombudsmen, Amy Priest and Abby Rivera, received a plaque from Richard O. Wightman Jr., acting principal deputy assistant secretary of defense (Reserve Affairs) and a plaque from the Military Officers Association of America.
The unit also received a cash award to be used to further enhance the unit’s family support programs.
Accoring to the Coast Guard’s Deployable Operations Group, PSU 305 was able to successfully link deployed Coast Guardsmen and member families during a six-month deployment to Kuwait, where the unit provided port/harbor and maritime security as part of Task Group 56.5.
During the deployment, the unit’s ombudsmen and unit command cadre were able to use traditional outreach tools and also leveraged the unit’s participation in the DOD’s Yellow Ribbon Program. During the mid-deployment Yellow Ribbon Workshop in March 2012, attending families were able to have a live meeting with deployed PSU members using Skype.
The ombudsmen also ensured that family members knew what support resources were available to them in case of an emergency.
The Reserve Family Readiness Award recognizes one National Guard and Reserve unit from each of the seven Reserve components, and the winners are those units with the best programs to support their families.
The DOD Reserve Family Readiness Awards Program was established in 2000 to recognize the top unit Family Readiness progracm in each of the Reserve components. Family Readiness Programs are particularly important as the United States relies on significant numbers of reservists to serve in critical locations worldwide. Family readiness has proven to be a key component of mission readiness. Robust Family Readiness Programs have enhanced the deployability of Guard and Reserve units and they represent a vital link in the support networks for Reserve families.