Coast Guard, good samaritan rescue 3 duck hunters near Milltown, Wash.

A Coast Guard Air Station Port Angeles MH-65 Dolphin helicopter

Coast Guard Air Station Port Angeles MH-65 Dolphin helicopter file photo

MILLTOWN, Wash. — The Coast Guard and a good samaritan rescued three duck hunters after their vessel capsized Sunday near the Skagit River entrance.

Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound watchstanders received an initial request for assistance from the Skagit County Sheriff Department as deputies were attempting to rescue the two men who remained stranded in mud flats roughly 200 yards from the Skagit River entrance near Milltown. A good Samaritan in the area rescued one of the three hunters and brought him to a nearby marina where he called 911.

Sector Puget Sound watchstanders directed a Coast Guard Air Station Port Angeles MH-65 Dolphin rescue helicopter crew to respond at approximately 12 p.m. The aircrew had been conducting routine training operations nearby in the vicinity of San Juan Island.

At 12:18 p.m. the aircrew arrived on scene and observed two men in knee-high water attempting to reach shore on foot. A rescue swimmer assisted the two men as they were hoisted into the aircraft.

The men were transported to waiting emergency medical services at a nearby baseball field at 12:50 p.m.

“They stayed with the vessel, got out of the water as best they could, and used life jackets they had kept onboard,” said Ensign Joshua Straits, pilot aboard the rescue helicopter. “These decisions limited the effects of hypothermia and helped us to locate them quickly.”

The survivors are reportedly in healthy condition.

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