On June 10th, USS Rushmore (LSD 47) spotted 65 distressed people floating on bamboo rafts waving orange and white flags. This happened in the waters between Indonesian Islands of Kalimantan and Sulawesi.
A small boat with two search and rescue swimmers rushed to the spot on getting orders from the Rushmore’s commanding officer, Cmdr.Thomas Stephens.
They were found with no means available for rowing the raft nor adequate food and water.
Sailors and Marines rescued them and took them all on board the Rushmore for medical attention. They will be shifting them to their places with the help of local officials.
Capt. Clint Carroll, Cmdr. Essex Amphibious Ready Group said, “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,”
Rushmore, deployed as a part of Essex Amphibious Ready Group (ARG), serves as a sea-based crisis response force capable of conducting amphibious missions across the full range of military operations. It was passing through the Makassar Strait after completing a port visit to Manado, Indonesia.