MOUNTAIN VIEW (CBS SF) — A Bay Area-based Air National Guard team from Moffett Federal Airfield is en route Friday on a stage two of a rescue mission to airlift a seriously ill 1-year-old girl on a sailboat 900 hundred miles off Mexico’s coast.

The 129th Rescue Wing got a call Thursday from the U.S. Coast Guard, reporting a sick infant on board the 36-foot sailing vessel, The Rebel Heart.

Four members of the 129th arrived on scene around 7 p.m.  Thursday night, parachuting into the ocean from an MC-130 aircraft, where they were able to board the vessel and stabilize the girl. That was phase one of the rescue.

Friday morning, an HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter is flying out to the family’s location to airlift her to a Navy frigate that has been re-routed to the area. The helicopter is equipped for long-range flight, and can refuel in mid-air if necessary, but an 1800 mile round-trip should not be necessary because a suitable ship was close enough to land on and provide medical care.

Raw Video: Air National Guard Unit Leaves Moffett Field In Mountain View

The San Diego family set sail March 20th from Mexico on a sailing adventure, continuing their life at sea according to their blog.  Eric Kaufman, his wife Charlotte, and their two daughters, 1-year-old Lyra and 3-year-old Cora, have sailed the Mexican coast for years, before setting off on their big adventure, a circumnaviation of the globe.

Kaufman writes on his blog he’s a licensed USCG captain and certified divemaster. They’ve baby-proofed their boat, and their daughters are at home on the sea.  They’ve been updating their progress via GPS and satellite Internet relays, powered by solar cells on board.

The Rebel  Heart, a 36-foot Hans Christian sloop. (Credit The Rebel Heart Facebook Page)

The Rebel Heart, a 36-foot Hans Christian sloop. (Credit The Rebel Heart Facebook Page)


The 129th Rescue Wing’s is tasked with recovering personnel, but also participates in civilian rescues, saving over 1,000 lives.

Below is a Youtube video the family posted to their website about their adventure.