Video: 71-year-old Man Aboard Cruise Ship Suffering Stroke Symptoms Medevaced 13 Miles to Shore

A 71-year-old man was medevaced 13 miles to safety by the U.S. Coast Guard this week after suffering from the symptoms of a stroke while aboard a cruise ship.

The passenger—who has not yet been named—was rescued on Wednesday morning from the Oosterdam, a Holland America Line ship that was en route to Yakutat, Alaska. A call for aid from the vessel's crew members was first made at roughly 9 a.m., officials said.

At the time of the call, the liner was approximately 13 miles off the entrance to Dry Bay in Alaska. The crew then altered course to close the distance with the agency's rescue vehicle, which was an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter dispatched from U.S.C.G. Air Station Sitka.

The helicopter crew had been on a training flight when they were diverted to conduct the medevac. A seen in the video footage, published online yesterday, they were able to board the Oosterdam cruise ship and hoist the man into the chopper in a stretcher.

"The aircrew returned to Air Station Sitka to swap crew members and departed at 10 a.m. to Oosterdam's last reported position," said Lt. Kyle Johnson, co-pilot on the medevac.

"The aircrew arrived on scene at 11:13 a.m., and lowered the rescue swimmer and a litter to the bow of the vessel. The passenger was hoisted in the litter and the rescue swimmer was recovered with a bare hook. The aircrew departed the scene and made best speed back to Air Station Sitka, where EMS was waiting with an ambulance," Lt. Johnson added.

As of 1 p.m. yesterday, U.S. Coast Guard officials said the passenger was in stable condition. According to its website, the Oosterdam holds close to 2,000 guests and travels to a slew of locations, including Alaska, New Zealand, Australia, Hawaii and the Panama Canal.

The U.S. Coast Guard is frequently dispatched to tourist vessels. Last Saturday, Air Station Sitka crew evacuated a cruise ship passenger close to Alaska's Glacier Bay.

Last Tuesday, Air Station Kodiak crew medically evacuated a 55-year-old woman who had been suffering from the symptoms of a stroke on the Island Princess cruise ship near Hinchinbrook Island.

As previously reported in June, U.S. Coast Guard first responders successfully evacuated two passengers from two separate cruise ships in less than 24 hours.

In the first incident, a medevac crew was dispatched by boat to help a 61-year-old woman suffering from cardiac problems on the Island Princess vessel close to Alaska's Prince William Sound. In the second case, a helicopter medevaced a 62-year-old woman from the Nieuw Amsterdam cruise ship near Skagway in Alaska. The Coast Guard did not elaborate on why she needed to be evacuated.

Video: 71-year-old Man Aboard Cruise Ship Suffering Stroke Symptoms Medevaced 13 Miles to Shore | News