Coast Guard, Wrightsville Beach agencies rescue swimmer

Posted at 1:51 PM, Jun 30, 2012

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard, local agencies and a good Samaritan worked together to rescue a man from the water off Johnny Mercer Pier in Wrightsville Beach, Friday.

At approximately 3 a.m., a concerned citizen contacted the local 911 dispatch reporting a man was having trouble swimming and appeared to need assistance.

A good Samaritan swam out to assist, but also became distressed in the effort.

New Hanover County dispatch contacted Coast Guard Station Wrightsville Beach while the New Hanover County Sheriff’s department launched their helicopter, SABLE, and Wrightsville Beach Fire Department deployed two Ocean Rescue lifeguards from shore.

Approximately 10 minutes after the initial call, a 25-foot Response Boat-small crew from Station Wrightsville Beach arrived on scene, and while SABLE illuminated the area from above, the boat crew pulled the distressed swimmer, the good Samaritan and one of lifeguards onboard. The second lifeguard swam ashore while the boat, crew and passengers went to station Wrightsville Beach.

“The crew of did an outstanding job in the recovery of the people in the water and I attribute it to us working hand in hand with the local agencies,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Jose Segura, operations petty officer of Station Wrightsville Beach. “This comes from years of developing relationships with the local agencies in the community.”

The man rescued was reportedly intoxicated, but in good health, and was taken into custody by New Hanover County Sheriffs.