Coast Guard, Coast Guard Auxiliary, Collier County Sheriff’s Office conduct interagency rescue near Marco Island, Fla.

Southeastern Coast Guard News
MARCO ISLAND, Fla. — A 29-year-old fisherman was rescued by Coast Guard Auxiliary crewmembers after his 12-foot dinghy was found one mile north of the Goodland Bridge in the Big Marco River, Monday.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg received notification from Collier County Sherriff’s Office at 10:50 p.m., Sunday, stating the fisherman departed the Goodland Marina in a dinghy and did not return. A concerned friend who was with the fisherman earlier that day reported the incident.

Two CCSO marine units and one Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission marine unit launched at 9 p.m., Sunday and discovered a 12-foot dinghy tied off to the mangroves approximately one mile north of the Goodland Bridge. The marine units continued to search the area from the marina to the location where the vessel was found.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Station Fort Myers Beach launched a Coast Guard Auxiliary crew from Flotilla 95 at 6 a.m., Monday to assist in the search.

At 7:20 a.m., the Coast Guard Auxiliary crew spotted the man at the edge of the river about a half mile south of where his vessel was found. The Auxiliary crew transported the fisherman back to the Goodland Marina where he was met by emergency medical services.

“The case this morning is a perfect example of how effective the U. S. Coast Guard can be; combining the close working relationship with the Collier County Sheriff’s Office and the significant force multiplier, which is the Coast Guard Auxiliary. This team effort resulted in saving the life of a person who was in imminent danger,” said Chief Warrant Officer Jeffrey Kerner, commanding officer of Coast Guard Station Fort Myers Beach.

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