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Base Ketchikan changes command: Cmdr. Holt retires, Cmdr. Dehnz assumes command
From front to back, U.S. Coast Guard Chief Health Services Technician Harold Thomas, Operations Specialist Chris Nutt, Commander Arthur Dehnz, retired Commander Ashley Holt, and Rear Admiral Melvin Bouboulis salute on Thursday during a change of command ceremony at Coast Guard Base Ketchikan. Staff photo by Dustin Safranek

Daily News Staff Writer

U.S. Coast Guard Base Ketchikan held a change of command and retirement ceremony on Thursday, during which Cmdr. Arthur M. Dehnz assumed command of Base Ketchikan from Cmdr. Ashley R. Holt, who officially retired.

Rear Adm. Melvin W. Bouboulis, Coast Guard director of operational logistics, was present at the ceremonies and took the time to praise Holt and Base Ketchikan personnel before welcoming Dehnz to his new position.

"Holt has done a stellar job," said Bouboulis.

Incoming commanding officer Dehnz is originally from Maryland, and was most recently serving with Coast Guard Sector Honolulu, where he was head of the Logistics Department from June 2016 to May 2019.

After graduating from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in 2003, Dehnz served as a damage control assistant and assistant engineer officer aboard the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Morgenthau. Among other duty stations Dehnz has been assigned to the Preparedness Division of the National Strike Force Coordination Center  and was assigned as the Facility Engineer at TISCOM.

Dehnz thanked the Holts for welcoming him to Ketchikan, and expressed thanks and excitement to the Base Ketchikan crew.

"To the crew of Base Ketchikan, I would like to express my gratitude for your warm welcome and I am just ecstatic to join such a great team. I look forward to working with you all over the next 3 years," said Dehnz.  

After the change of command ceremony ended, the retirement ceremony commenced.

Holt, originally from Indiana, enlisted in 1994 and joined Base Ketchikan in July 2016. His Coast Guard career has spanned over 25 years.

Bouboulis talked at length about Holt's many characteristics and achievements.

"You've gotten raving reviews and you have done nothing but righteous and positive things for the Coast Guard here in Ketchikan," Bouboulis said. "You have a true heart for people and your immense passion and dedication, and work ethic will be truly missed here in our Coast Guard."

Holt then was presented with Presidential Certificate of Appreciation and an official certificate of retirement.

Holt's wife and two sons were also given certificates of appreciation for their continued support of his career.

During his comments, Holt thanked the many people with whom he has worked.

"These awards have very little to do with me and a lot to do with the crew," he said.

Holt said that meeting the "highest quality of people that exist," has been a constant element throughout his career.

"When I think back about my career one of the things that jumps in front of my mind is the quality people that I have met throughout the service," said Holt.

Holt and his family will be leaving Ketchikan to go back to their hometown of Bedford, Indiana.

Coast Guard Base Ketchikan supports the Coast Guard's operation missions throughout Alaska. The Base provides personnel, administrative, logistical, medical, procurement, contracting, industrial and electronical support to Southeast Alaska, according to Coast Guard information