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Tuesday, June 16, 2015

USS RUSHMORE RESCUES 65 PEOPLE FROM BAMBOO RAFTS IN PACIFIC OCEAN

FROM:  U.S. NAVY

Right:  150610-M-ST621-140 MAKASSAR STRAIT (June 10, 2015) Distressed persons wait to be rescued by Sailors and Marines aboard the amphibious dock landing ship USS Rushmore (LSD 47) in the Pacific Ocean. Rushmore rescued 65 people after it was discovered they were floating on bamboo rafts tied together and with no means of propulsion. Once on board, the rescued individuals were provided food and medical attention by Marines and Sailors from the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit and the Essex Amphibious Ready Group.  U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Emmanuel Ramos.

USS Rushmore Aids 65 People at Sea Near Indonesia
From Essex Amphibious Ready Group Public Affairs

Makassar Strait (NNS) -- USS Rushmore (LSD 47) rendered assistance to 65 people on makeshift bamboo rafts in the waters between the Indonesian islands of Kalimantan and Sulawesi June 10.

Shipboard lookouts spotted the distressed persons waving orange and white flags. Rushmore's commanding officer, Cmdr. Thomas Stephens, ordered the launch of a small boat with two search and rescue swimmers to provide assistance. Rushmore Sailors discovered 65 people on sinking bamboo rafts tied together with no means of propulsion, food or water.

Sailors and Marines brought all 65 people on board the Rushmore for medical attention and will coordinate with local officials for their well-being.

"This is an example of the Essex Amphibious Ready Group's professional maritime skill and ability to be where it matters, when it matters to offer assistance," said Capt. Clint Carroll, Commander, Essex Amphibious Ready Group.

Rushmore was transiting the Makassar Strait after having just completed a port visit to Manado, Indonesia. As part of the Essex Amphibious Ready Group (ARG), Rushmore is in the Western Pacific en route to the Arabian Gulf for a routine deployment. Deployed with a Marine Expeditionary Unit, the ARG serves as a sea-based crisis response force capable of conducting amphibious missions across the full range of military operations.