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'Castaway' Rescue on Pacific Island: Men Spell Out 'Help' With Leaves

Image: 'Castaway' Rescue on Pacific Island: Men Spell Out 'Help' With Leaves
(Facebook/U.S. Coast Guard Hawaii Pacific)

By    |   Monday, 11 Apr 2016 01:29 PM

A "Castaway" rescue on the Pacific island of Fanadik was made possible after three men spelled out the word "help" in palm fronds, capturing the attention of a passing U.S. Navy plane, The Associated Press reported.

The three men, missing for three days after a wave overtook the skiff they were traveling in, were found waving their orange life jackets on the tiny Micronesian island of Fanadik, several hundred miles north of Papua New Guinea, officials said Saturday.

The men's families reported them missing Tuesday after they failed to show up at the Micronesian island of Weno, where they were traveling from their home island, Pulap.

"Fortunately for them, they were all wearing life jackets and were able to swim to the deserted island," U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman Melissa McKenzie said.

A local boat picked the men up and took them to a hospital. McKenzie said she didn't have information on the men's condition Saturday, but officials told The Washington Post they were not injured.

Two bulk carriers searched a combined 17 hours for the men as part of AMVER, a U.S. Coast Guard voluntary search and rescue program. With AMVER, rescue coordinators can identify participating ships in the area of distress and ask them to help.

In the last two weeks, 15 people have been rescued in the Pacific with the help of 10 AMVER vessels and six aircrews, the U.S. Coast Guard said.

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A "Castaway" rescue on the Pacific island of Fanadik was made possible after three men spelled out the word "help" in palm fronds, capturing the attention of a passing U.S. Navy plane, The Associated Press reported.
castaway, rescue, pacific, island, help
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2016-29-11
Monday, 11 Apr 2016 01:29 PM
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