Tag Archives: Coast Guard

The Most Dangerous Jobs


Working as a crew person on a fishing boat on the high seas or as part of a Coast Guard search and rescue helicopter crew rank as two of the most challenging and dangerous jobs in the world. When the fishing vessel La Conte began to sink in eighty-mile-per-hour (128.7 km/h) winds, the terrified crew had to jump into sixty-foot (18.3 m) seas in the middle of the night. Meanwhile, a Coast Guard chopper crew in Sitka was deployed to search for the source of a distress call from a satellite beacon. The driving hail and fierce winds battered and bounced the helicopter around the sky while its occupants searched the dark ocean for the source of the EPIRB signal. The pilot dropped down as close to the sea as he dared, and he knew that a rogue wave could bury the chopper at any moment. What the crew of the helicopter saw stunned them. Four men fought to stay afloat in massive seas. Rescuing them seemed like an impossible task.




Lewan, Todd. “Helicopter crew braves vicious storm.” “Storm Gods and Heroes.” 12-28-1998. Anchorage Daily News.

Lewan, Todd. “Rescue in a raging sea.” “Storm Gods and Heroes.” 12-27-1998. Anchorage Daily News.

Lewan, Todd. “Rescue in sight, just out of reach.” “Storm Gods and Heroes.” 12-29-1998. Anchorage Daily News.

Lewan, Todd. “’Survivor in the basket.’” “Storm Gods and Heroes.” 12-30-1998. Anchorage Daily News.

Lewan, Todd. “Wrenching rescue; puzzle solved.” “Storm Gods and Heroes.” 12-31-1998. Anchorage Daily News.

Walker, Spike. Coming Back Alive. 2001. New York: St. Martins Griffin.


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Robin Barefield is the author of five Alaska wilderness mystery novels, Big Game, Murder Over Kodiak, The Fisherman’s Daughter, Karluk Bones, and Massacre at Bear Creek Lodge. She has also written two non-fiction books: Kodiak Island Wildlife and Murder and Mystery in the Last Frontier. Sign up to subscribe to her free monthly newsletter on true murder and mystery in Alaska.

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