Coast Guard Medevacs Cruise Ship Passenger to Atlantic City

New York – A Coast Guard helicopter rescue crew from Air Station Atlantic City medevaced a man complaining of heart-attack-like symptoms from a Royal Caribbean cruise ship about 40 miles south east of New York City, at 9:30 p.m. Sunday.

Thomas Sylvester, a 76-year-old North Port, N.Y., resident, reported suffering heart attack symptoms at approximately 8:15 p.m. while aboard the Explorer of the Seas, who then notified Coast Guard Sector New York.

A Coast Guard flight surgeon reccomended Sylvester be medevaced by helicopter.

“Our first priority was to get to the cruise ship as fast as possible,” said Coast Guard helicopter pilot Lt. Christopher Grooms.

The Atlantic City based Coast Guard rescue crew arrived on scene at 10:00 p.m. Pilots maneuvered the HH-65 Dolphin over the bow of the Explorer of the Seas while lowering the rescue swimmer to the victim.

“We put the rescue swimmer down to the ship first so that he could assess the overall condition of the victim,” said Grooms. “The rescue swimmer’s primary concern is the victim’s stability and overall condition.”

Sylvester was hoisted by a rescue litter to the overhead helicopter and then transported and delivered to AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center Mainland Campus, Atlantic City, N.J., at approximately 11:35 p.m. for treatment.

“After the rescue swimmer had a chance to aid the victim, our priority was to get the victim aboard the helicopter as safely and quickly as possible and transport him to the best medical facility for the treatment he needed,” said Grooms.

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