USS PAUL HAMILTON, At Sea (NNS) -- Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Paul Hamilton (DDG 60) rescued a stranded mariner Dec. 9 while operating south of the Hawaiian Islands.
Paul Hamilton Sailors rendered assistance to Ron Ingraham after receiving a distress call from U.S. Coast Guard District 14's Honolulu Sector.
Ingraham, stranded at sea since Nov. 27, was caught in a storm that blew his vessel approximately 200 miles south of the Hawaiian Islands, leaving him without food or water for 12 days. The Coast Guard ceased searching for Ingraham Dec. 1 after Coast Guard and Navy crews conducted an extensive search of the area, flying 59 sorties and covering approximately 12,000 square miles.
"I thought I was going to die today," said Ingraham. "You guys are heroes."
Paul Hamilton received the call while approximately 14 miles from the vessel's last known position and arrived on scene about 30 minutes later. Once on scene, Sailors aboard Paul Hamilton launched a seven-meter rigid-hull inflatable boat (RHIB) to render assistance.
The RHIB crew of Paul Hamilton, that comprised Ensign John Crow from San Diego, Petty Officer Majelle Medrano-Pangasinan from the Republic of the Philippines, Petty Officer Jeffery Hansen, from Tacoma, Washington, Petty Officer Darren Purvis, from Raleigh, North Carolina, and Petty Officer Michael Farbridge-Currie, from Las Vegas, provided food, water and medical attention. Ingraham embarked Paul Hamilton while awaiting a Coast Guard cutter to take him and tow his vessel, Malia, back to port.
"We are grateful to be a lifelong friend of Mr. Ron Ingraham," said Paul Hamilton Commanding Officer Cmdr. John Barsano. "Sailors on board Paul Hamilton have a heroic sea story to share and an early Christmas gift -- saving a life."
Paul Hamilton is one of eight surface warfare ships of Commander, Destroyer Squadron 21. The ship maintains warfighting readiness, capable of operating forward with allies and partners in the Western Pacific to deter aggression and preserve peace.
Joint, interagency and international relationships strengthen U.S. 3rd Fleet's ability to respond to crisis and protect the collective maritime interests of the U.S. and its allies and partners.