Coast Guard rescues 12-year-old boy drifting from shore off Bolivar Peninsula
Houston, TX — A 12-year-old boy was hoisted to safety by a Coast Guard helicopter crew Tuesday, after drifting 300-400 yards away from shore in an inner tube near Crystal Beach on Bolivar Peninsula in Texas.
The boy was reportedly swimming with his family when he was pulled out to sea. The Galveston County Sheriff's Office contacted Coast Guard Sector Houston/Galveston watchstanders to request assistance at about 2 p.m. The watchstanders launched a boatcrew from Station Galveston and diverted the MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew in the area, which included a flight mechanic on her first day of duty since reporting to the air station. The helicopter was on scene about 10 minutes after being notified of the boys location. The flight mechanic lowered the rescue swimmer to the water and hoisted the boy to safety.
"Unfortunately some bad decisions left him stranded, but he contributed to his own rescue by making the wise decision to stay with his raft instead of trying to swim back to shore," said Lt. Michael Gibson, a pilot aboard the helicopter. "This gave us a big target to spot and made it much easier to effect a rescue."
The boatcrew arrived later and was able to recover the boy's inner tube.