Coast Guard rescues two children, searches for one adult off the Port O’Connor coast

PORT O’CONNOR, Texas — The Coast Guard rescued two children, and continues to search for one adult approximately 17 miles southeast of Port O’Connor.

A watchstander at Coast Guard Station Port O’Connor received a call at approximately 9:30 p.m., May 17, 2009, from a woman reporting that her husband, age 38, and two children, ages 13 and 17, were overdue from a fishing trip. The Coast Guard contacted area sheriff’s departments to search for the truck and trailer used to transport the 19-foot fishing boat to a dock facility. The truck and trailer were located at approximately 10 the Matagorda County Sheriff’s Office at Matagorda Harbor.

A watchstander at Station Port O’Connor received a call at approximately 10:30 p.m. from Sector Corpus Christi reporting that employees from an offshore oil rig had spotted three persons in the water matching the description of the missing boaters. A Coast Guard 41-foot boat crew was dispatched from Station Port O’Connor, and an HH-65C rescue helicopter crew and an HU-25 Falcon jet crew from Air Station Corpus Christi were launched to assist in the search.

Workers from the oil rig reported that the 19-foot fishing boat was taking on water and had capsized under the rig. Oil rig employees lowered lines to the children and safely hoisted them onto the rig. A life-ring was lowered for the adult male, but he had reportedly drifted out of sight.

The HH-65C rescue helicopter crew landed on the rig and transported the children to Station Port O’Connor. The children were reunited with family upon reaching the station.

A 41-foot rescue boat crew, helicopter rescue crew and Falcon jet crew are currently on scene searching for the 38-year-old male. The Coast Guard Cutter Steelhead is scheduled to join the search effort this afternoon.

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