Coast Guard, Navy medevac woman near Cape Lookout

Crewmembers from the USS Whidbey Island (LSD 41) transfer a 20-year-old woman to a 47-foot Motor Lifeboat boatcrew from Coast Guard Station Fort Macon after falling aboard a recreational vessel approximately 20 miles south of Cape Lookout, N.C., June 18, 2020. The woman was transported back to shore and transferred to local emergency medical services personnel. (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Navy)

Crewmembers from the USS Whidbey Island (LSD 41) transfer a 20-year-old woman to a 47-foot Motor Lifeboat boatcrew from Coast Guard Station Fort Macon after falling aboard a recreational vessel approximately 20 miles south of Cape Lookout, N.C., June 18, 2020.  (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Navy)

CAPE LOOKOUT, N.C. — The Coast Guard and the Navy conducted a joint medical evacuation of a 20-year-old woman who fell aboard a recreational vessel approximately 20 miles south of Cape Lookout, Thursday morning.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Sector North Carolina command center received a relayed notification from crewmembers aboard the vessel Pole Dancer that a 20-year-old woman aboard a 31-foot Contender vessel fell and sustained a head injury.

The USS Whidbey Island (LSD 41) was operating in the vicinity, preparing to conduct amphibious training with Marines from Camp Lejeune. The ship’s crew was able to quickly launch its small boat and brought the woman and a male companion aboard the Navy vessel to treat her injuries while a 47-foot Motor Lifeboat crew from Coast Guard Station Fort Macon was launched to assist in the response.

“I arrived to the scene and immediately treated the patient’s primary injuries,” said Navy Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Stephanie Caicedo, a sailor assigned to the Whidbey Island. “After further assessment, the boat crew and I transported the patient back to the Whidbey Island for further medical attention. The brevity and efficiency executed by our medical team proves all of our training is worthwhile.”

Once the Station Fort Macon boatcrew arrived on scene, the Navy transferred the woman and the man onto the Coast Guard vessel, which promptly medevaced them back to shore, where local emergency medical services personnel were waiting to respond and take her to Carteret Health Care in Morehead City, North Carolina.

“Today’s events show that a well-trained crew can respond where it matters, when it matters,” said Cmdr. Jean Marie Sullivan, Whidbey Island’s commanding officer. “I’m grateful we were in the right spot in the ocean to render assistance and do our duty as mariners.”

“We greatly appreciate the crew of the USS Whidbey Island for their quick actions in providing swift medical attention to the woman,” said Chief Petty Officer Danielle Flint, command duty officer at the Sector North Carolina command center. “Cases like this showcase the Coast Guard and Navy’s exceptional partnership and communication skills in situations for those in need while at sea.”

As part of America’s sea services, the Coast Guard and Navy routinely work together in various mission areas, providing presence around the globe during peacetime and in times of conflict.

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