Crew Awarded for Rescue of Polynesian Sailing Canoe
By Wendy Osher
The crew of a motor boat was issued an award from the US Coast Guard on Tuesday for their help in the rescue of a traditional sailing canoe near Palau in March.
The Public Service Commendation was awarded to the crew of the Hyundai Unity vessel, officials said.
According to the Coast Guard announcement, the boat responded to a request on March 4, 2013, to assist the Alingano Maisu, a traditional double-hulled canoe from Palau Community College that reportedly began taking on water with 10 sailors aboard.
The 56-foot Alingano Maisu was built in Hawaiʻi as a gift to legendary navigator Mau Piailug, who has since passed. The vessel is used for educational purposes in culture and navigation. According to the Oceania Television News Network, the vessel was towed back to shore where restoration efforts were planned.
“Hyundai Unity immediately changed course and proceeded to the vessel location where they were able to rescue all 10 sailors and eventually transfer them over to the Coast Guard Cutter Washington for transport to Palau,” said Coast Guard officials in a press release today.