Coast Guard rescues boaters
The Coast Guard rescued two missing boaters Monday after their 23-foot boat capsized 37 miles west of St. James City.
Cape Coral residents Renier Denis, 37 and Osmiel Vasquez, 35, were found on the hull of their capsized vessel after an air crew spotted a flare shortly before 5 a.m., officials said.
Rescue efforts began Sunday after watchstanders from Station Fort Myers Beach received a call from Denis’ wife at 10:50 p.m. She said that Denis and Vasquez had left St. James City at 7 a.m. They were due back before dark, but had not returned.
Sector St. Petersburg’s command center crew devised and coordinated a search-and-rescue plan, and an HC-144 Ocean Sentry airplane crew from Air Station Miami was launched to commence the search, Coast Guard officials said
The air crew spotted the flare within the search area at 4:40 a.m. and located the two men, wearing lifejackets, on top of the capsized boat. A 45-foot Response Boat-Medium from Station Fort Myers Beach received the men’s position from the air crew, arrived on scene and made the rescue.
“This rescue perfectly showcases the excellent collaborative effort from multiple Coast Guard units including our search and rescue planners, air crewmembers and boat crewmembers,” said Senior Chief Petty Officer Angel Ramos, a command duty officer at Sector St. Petersburg in a prepared statement. “Without any one component, we would not be able to execute our search and rescue mission.”