U.S. Air Force Races To Tragedy On Carnival Cruise Ship

Photo by Gökhan Kara on Unsplash

(PartiallyPolitics.com) – On Saturday, a mother and child aboard a Carnival Cruise ship were airlifted by an Air Force helicopter in a hair-raising rescue.

Two HC-130J Combat King 11 aircraft and two HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopters, alongside two teams of pararescuemen and combat rescue officers, based at the Patrick Space Force Base in Brevard County, Florida, flew 350 nautical miles to reach the Carnival Venezia in the U.S. eastern coast, according to a statement by 920th Rescue Wing released on Tuesday.

The rescue took place on May 4, 8 days into the 10-day cruise that set sail from Port Canaveral, Florida, on April 26 on a cruise to the Caribbean and Bahamas. 

According to the Air Force, to reach the location of the Carnival Venezia in the Caribbean, rescuers had to conduct three air-to-air refuelings. 

In photographs of the rescue mission, the unidentified woman and her son are seen being hoisted up from the ship’s deck by the rescue helicopter.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Air Force revealed that they had been “successfully transferred to a hospital in the United States,” following an 8-hour journey and 1,200 flown miles.

However, at this stage, the nature of the medical emergency nor the identities of the cruise ship passengers who found themselves in distress had not been revealed.

The commander of the rescue group lauded the mission as a success, stating that Saturday’s rescue was “what ready now looks like.”

Lieutenant Colonel John Lowe explained that “countless hours of training” was what prepared the teams for “These real-world missions,” allowing them to “execute this mission without hesitation.” 

Lowe noted that the “highly trained” combined arms teams and their comprehension of the role in the “bigger picture” resulted in the mission’s “successful completion.”

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