A crew from Fleet Logistics Support Squadron Six Two (VR-62) helped rescue a boat and five people who were adrift and lost at sea last week.
The ‘Nomads’ crew and C-130 aircraft were diverted from mission Convoy 3744 and became Rescue 313 while transiting through Guam.
The Nomads were on a scheduled overnight stop in Guam when they were contacted by U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam and asked to assist with a search and rescue mission off the coast of Chuuk Island, Micronesia.
They launched 5:00 a.m. Guam local time on May 25, and proceeded to the search area 550 miles southeast of Guam. Rescue 313 arrived on scene at 7:00 a.m. and began flying the search pattern. Three hours later the aircraft commander noticed a flash of light about five miles ahead and directed all eyes in the flight station to the area. The crew flew towards the area and descended to an altitude of 500 feet for a closer look. They soon realized this was the vessel they were looking for and all five occupants were aboard and alive after drifting for seven days.
Rescue 313 stayed on station until Zeus Leader, a transport ship, was directed to the scene for rescue. Five and a half hours later Zeus Leader arrived and rescued five people. Rescue 313 was low on fuel and diverted to Chuuk Island for refueling. While on the ground Lt. Cmdr Todd Nichols, Rescue 313’s Aircraft Commander, called the Coast Guard for an update. “All five souls alive and well.”
The mission complete Rescue 313 returned to Guam for some much needed rest before resuming their convoy mission.
Located at Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Fla., VR-62 is one of five Navy Reserve C-130 squadrons serving the US Navy’s high priority logistics needs around the globe.
Press Release, May 28, 2013; Image: US Navy