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Detroit Coast Guard crew evacuating trauma patients
from tiny village in mountains of Haiti
By LaNia Coleman | The Bay City Times
January 19, 2010, 4:22PM

A Michigan U.S. Coast Guard aircrew has been flying non-stop in support of earthquake relief efforts in Haiti.

The crew from Air Station Detroit is using the HH-65C Dolphin rescue helicopter to evacuate trauma patients from the small village of Milot, nestled in the mountains 60 miles north of Port Au Prince.

"U.S. Coast Guard and United Nations security was required in the small village, as mobs of local residents rushed the helicopter as it landed," said Lt. j.g. Alan Baker, the station's public information officer.

Avionics Electrical Technician 2nd Class Duane Zitta handled the loading and care of the patients, and on several occasions had to assist in marshaling the crowd away from the turning helicopter.

"Multiple trips from the village to awaiting Coast Guard Cutters in the bay resulted in the successful evacuation of nine trauma patients throughout an arduous six-hour flight," Baker said.

Patients included a small girl and a young boy with severely injured legs, he said.

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The crew from Air Station Detroit is using the HH-65C Dolphin rescue helicopter.


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