GEORGE H.W. BUSH, At Sea (NNS) -- George H.W. Bush Carrier Strike Group search and rescue assets successfully rescued a Sailor at sea who was missing from the guided-missile destroyer USS Mitscher (DDG 57) Oct. 20.
The Sailor was rescued after spending more than five hours in the water off the coast of North Carolina and was transported to USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) for evaluation by the ship's Medical Department.
George H.W. Bush Commanding Officer Chip Miller, said the Sailor was located by another Sailor standing aft lookout aboard USS Philippine Sea (CG 58).
Philippine Sea launched a rigid-hulled inflatable boat to rescue the Sailor, who was then transported to the carrier by Helicopter Combat Sea Squadron (HSC) 9, attached to Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 8.
"This was a total strike group effort," said Commander, Carrier Strike Group 2 Rear Adm. Nora Tyson. "From the helicopter squadrons and search and rescue swimmers to the shipboard lookouts and medical personnel, everyone played a role in saving this Sailor's life."
At approximately 12:15 p.m. local time, USS Mitscher personnel could not locate the Sailor during a muster of the crew. The ship immediately conducted standard procedures to determine if and when a Sailor went overboard. After a complete personnel roll call, it was determined that the Sailor was not accounted for, and was assumed overboard.
The entire strike group immediately initiated search and rescue operations using all sea and air assets, and the Sailor was rescued at approximately 5:40 p.m. local time.
"This is exactly what I mean when I talk about the awesome teamwork of the George H.W. Bush Strike Group," Tyson said. "I am so incredibly proud of everyone for their commitment and dedication. This Sailor is alive today because we train as we fight, and when the time came, we all knew what to do."
A full investigation is underway to determine the circumstances of the incident.
For more news from USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn77/.