While many Sitkans were nestled snug in their beds in the wee hours of Christmas morning, a Coast Guard helicopter crew was busy rescuing four boaters whose 15-foot vessel had capsized near the Yamani Islets, around 27 miles south of Sitka.
According to a Coast Guard press release, watchstanders in Juneau received a call around 11 p.m. on Christmas Eve about an overdue vessel. A helicopter crew from Air Station Sitka, and the Ketchikan-based Cutter Bailey Barco both responded to look for the boaters.
While the helicopter crew was searching, they received a distress call over VHF radio from near the entrance of Necker Bay. The caller confirmed that all of the boaters had made it ashore after their vessel capsized.
The crew hoisted all four boaters: A woman in her 50’s and her three children, two teenagers and one adult. The helicopter crew took them back to Sitka, where they were reported to be in stable condition.
On scene weather was air temperature of 35 degrees, 10-mph winds, and 10-mile visibility.