San Diego Padres hold U.S. Coast Guard Appreciation Day

SAN DIEGO - The San Diego Padres will honor U.S. Coast Guard members as they take on the San Francisco Giants at Petco Park Sunday afternoon. It part of the teams military salutes at Sunday home games this season.

Kevin Byrne and Michael Page, two members of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, will be recognized for their rescue of two personal watercraft operators in Oceanside Harbor in August while off duty.

Byrne and Page were setting out for a recreational voyage when they noticed two stranded personal watercraft in trouble within 40 feet of the harbor's north jetty, according to the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.

Both watercraft appeared to have broken down and their operators were struggling to get the vessels back into the harbor, fighting against swells running up to three feet and an outgoing tide.

Byrne and Page took both watercraft in tow and brought them and their operators to the boat launch inside the harbor. Neither of the operators of the watercraft was wearing a life jacket or carried other safety or communications gear.

They both received a Medal of Operational Merit.

The ceremonial first pitch will be thrown by Petty Officer 1st Class Derek Shay, the 2012 Active Duty Enlisted Person of the Year for the 11th Coast Guard District Region. Shay is a machinery technician assigned to Coast Guard Cutter Boutwell, based in San Diego.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Mike Dalager of the Aids to Navigation Team San Diego will perform the national anthem before the game and "God Bless America" during the seventh inning break.

As with all Sunday games at Petco Park, the Padres will wear their Marine digital camouflage uniforms as they attempt to sweep the three game series against the Giants.

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