Coast Guard rescues man trapped on island in Mosquito Lagoon

NEW SMYNRA BEACH, Fla. – The Coast Guard rescued a man trapped on a small island in Mosquito Lagoon near Kennedy Park Monday after he had fallen overboard from a fishing vessel Sunday evening.

Rescued was Stephen Stalmaker, 24, of Edgewater, Fla. Stalmaker was fishing aboard a 16-foot silver bass boat Sunday evening when he fell overboard at approximately 7 p.m.

Coast Guard Station Ponce de Leon Inlet, Fla., rescue coordinators received report of a 911 call made to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Department at 2:50 a.m. Monday from a fisherman claiming to hear screaming and whistle blowing offshore. A 23-foot utility boat crew from the station immediately deployed to investigate. An Air One helicopter crew from the Volusia County Sheriff’s Department also deployed to help search for Stalmaker.

Coast Guard Station Ponce de Leon Inlet crewmembers found Stalmaker in good condition shortly after 3 a.m. on a small island on the Intracoastal Waterway. Based on childhood advice from his father, Stalmaker said he always wore a whistle while on the water. He was transported to Edgewater Boat Ramp where emergency medical personnel were waiting to evaluate him.

This rescue illustrates the vital importance of safety equipment for all seasoned and recreational boaters. The Coast Guard recommends the use of a registered EPIRB, PPIRB, fully functioning marine band radio and proper use of life jackets.

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