Men Rescued From Remote Pacific Island After Spelling “HELP” in the Sand
Three men who were stranded on a remote, uninhabited Pacific island for three days are safe after using palm fronds to spell the word “HELP” in the sand.
The men’s families reported them missing Tuesday after they failed to show up at the Micronesian island of Weno, U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman Melissa McKenzie told the Associated Press.
The men were traveling in a skiff from another Micronesian island when a wave overtook them, she said.
“Fortunately for them, they were all wearing life jackets and were able to swim to the deserted island,” McKenzie said.
The Coast Guard was first notified that they were missing just before noon on Tuesday, the Washington Post reports, after which it immediately issued an urgent broadcast seeking assistance from the Navy and vessels in the area of the skiff’s last known location. Two cargo ships helped by conducting a combined 17-hour search.
A Navy P-8 Madfox 807 aircrew from Misawa Air Base in Japan was conducting a search pattern for the missing mariners when they spotted survivors holding lifejackets and their makeshift sign on Fanadik Island.