Coast Guard Auxiliary pilot locates missing paddle boarder stranded on Desecheo Island

d7SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – The crew of a Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopter rescued one of two missing paddle boarders Tuesday afternoon who was stranded on Desecheo Island, approximately 15 nautical miles off the coast of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico.

Rescued is Michael Vazquez, 25, as Coast Guard rescue crews continue to search for Sheily Roque, 30, the second paddle boarder who still remains missing.

The pilot of a Coast Guard Auxiliary fixed-wing aircraft actively searching for the missing paddle boarders located Vaquez at approximately 11:23 a.m. Tuesday.

Shortly thereafter, a MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Boriquen arrived on scene and deployed their rescue swimmer and helicopter rescue basket to hoist and recover Vazquez from the island. The Coast Guard aircrew transported Vazquez to Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen, where he will be evaluated by Emergency Medical Services personnel.

The search continues for the second paddle boarder.

Coast Guard rescue crews involved in the search are:

  • Coast Guard Cutter Valiant, a 210-foot Medium Endurance Cutter home ported in Mayport, Fla.
  • Coast Guard Cutter Farallon and Coast Guard Cutter Key Largo, 110-foot patrol boats home ported in Puerto Rico
  • An MH-65 Dolphin helicopters from Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen
  • Coast Guard Auxiliary fixed-wing aircraft
  • Civil Air Patrol fixed-wing aircraft

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