Not Quite ‘Gilligan’s Island’, But Still Lost After 3-Hour Tour, Then Rescued

American and Australian aircraft located three Micronesian sailors stranded for three days on Pikelot, a remote Pacific island. The sailors had embarked on, yes, a three-hour tour, or trip, of about 26 miles between two Pacific atolls in a 23-foot skiff.  They veered off course and eventually ran out of fuel.

The sailors were stranded on Pikelot for three days. The island is home to a rookery and scrub forest. The men constructed a makeshift shelter and carved a giant SOS in the sand, which is how the aircraft spotted them. A helicopter landed on the island on Sunday to check the men’s condition and gave them food and water after its crew spotted their SOS, then a Micronesian vessel made its way to the island to pick them up.

Australian Navy’s Capt. Terry Morrison said in a defense department statement:

“I am proud of the response and professionalism of all on board as we fulfil our obligation to contribute to the safety of life at sea wherever we are.”

So there was no Ginger in a sequined dress, or Howells who for some reason took luggage on a three-hour boat ride and yet never seemed to change clothes.  It was still a story of lost at sea, only this time they were rescued.

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