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Guardsmen save man 200 miles off coast of California

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Air National Guardsmen from the 129th Rescue Wing here performed a rescue mission 200 miles off the coast of California on Feb. 4.

Responding to a call from the Eleventh District Coast Guard at Alameda, Calif., pararescuemen, two HH-60G Pave Hawk rescue helicopters and one MC-130P Combat Shadow aircraft departed here mid-morning and were on scene by noon.

The team provided medical assistance to a 54-year-old male who had suffered stroke-like symptoms aboard the cargo ship MSC Beijing. Guardsmen performed a medical evacuation, taking the patient to the San Jose Regional Medical Center in San Jose, Calif.

"This is a prime example of how the 129th and California National Guard is ready to support civilian authorities at a moment's notice," said Col. Steven J. Butow, the 129th RQW commander. "The Coast Guard knew they could depend on our specialized capability as one of the premier rescue units in the nation."

This rescue brings the total number of people saved by the 129th RQW to 948.

The primary mission of the 129th RQW is to train and be prepared to perform its wartime mission of combat search and rescue anywhere in the world. In addition to its wartime mission, the unit also works closely with the Coast Guard and various civil agencies on state missions. Equipped with MC-130P Combat Shadow tankers and HH-60G Pave Hawk rescue helicopters, the 129th RQW has performed a wide variety of civilian search and rescue missions, including distressed persons aboard ships, lost or injured hikers, and medical evacuations.

Article by Air Force News Service