NEWS | 129th RQS US 129th Rescue Squadron US Air Force

California Guards MedEvac Cruise 740 Km Offshore

The California Air National Guard HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopters from the 129th Rescue Squadron completed a medical evacuation (MedEvac) of a passenger from the Ovation of the Seas cruise liner, approximately 400 nautical miles ( 740 kilometers! ) from the San Francisco coast, by conducting aerial refueling from an HC-130J Hercules tanker aircraft

The rescue marks the 1,161st life saved by the California Air National Guard 129th Rescue Wing

California Guards MedEvac Cruise 740 Km Offshore
US Air Force, May 10, 2024 - MOFFETT FIELD, CA by Senior Airman Serena Smith - On May 7, the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center activated the California Air National Guard’s 129th Rescue Wing to airlift a man on a cruise ship to local hospital on Tuesday.

The 64-year-old man suffered a heart attack aboard the Bahamian-based Ovation of the Seas cruise liner, 800 nautical miles from the coast of San Francisco, prompting medical personnel on board to determine the need for higher medical care.

Col. Victor L. Teal Jr., 129th Rescue Wing commander said “The 129th Rescue Wing is always ready to execute our full spectrum of capabilities. Over 1,161 times we have answered the call. At home and abroad, in combat and in peace, our highly trained and motivated Airmen have pushed the limits to bring someone home alive when we were their last hope. Our Airmen have dedicated their lives to service of State and Country and I couldn’t be prouder of the team, their accomplishments, and the things we do ‘that others may live.’”

The wing partnered with U.S. Coast Guard District 11 to launch one U.S. Air Force HC-130J Combat King II aircraft and one HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter, assigned to the wing, from Moffett Air National Guard Base in Mountain View, Tuesday morning.

The team met with the ship approximately 400 nautical miles from the San Franscisco coast, where Guardian Angel pararescuemen hoisted the man onto the helicopter to provide medical care and transfer him directly to Regional Medical Center in San Jose. The crew performed in-air refueling four times to deliver 6,000 lbs of fuel for the long-range rescue.

California Guards MedEvac Cruise 740 Km Offshore
helicopter aerial refueling over the ocean

The man is in stable condition and recovering, according to his daughter Veronica Goode. “He is an Army combat vet himself and I know he would want to thank you,” she said. “He would have been on cloud nine during the helicopter ride if he hadn’t been sedated. He loves to fly.”

Airmen at the wing constantly work to ensure readiness for when a call comes in. “Everything went extremely well,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Kenley Lok, the mission’s search and rescue duty officer. “Everybody’s efforts made this a success. It’s not one person or one shop, it’s everyone coming together as a whole,” he said.

When the mission came in, the wing’s Airmen were ready to respond, he said.

“It takes everybody to make the mission happen and make it successful,” he said. “It’s a one team, one fight mentality. One can’t do it without the other.”

The rescue marks the wing’s 1,161st life saved.

The wing’s federal mission is to train, prepare and conduct worldwide combat search and rescue operations over land or water. The wing leverages these skills at home by providing support to the California Governor’s office during state emergencies and contingencies, including search and rescue and aerial firefighting.

California Guards MedEvac Cruise 740 Km Offshore
Ovation of the Seas cruise liner

Location : US Moffett Field

  See also

129th RQS US 129th Rescue Squadron US Air Force
HH-60G Pave Hawk in US US Air Force





Helicopters for sale
Future helicopters
Flying a helicopter
Helicopter stories
TV and movies

Helicopter books
Helicopter patches
Helicopter model kits