From USNS Saturn Public Affairs
U.S. Navy combat stores ship USNS Saturn (T-AFS 10) aided a stranded fishing vessel about 53 nautical miles south of Aug. 24.
Saturn's watchstanders on the bridge noticed two crew members of the fishing vessel Triple Suerte waiving distress flags. After receiving permission from Joint Interagency Task Force South (JIATF-S), who had tactical control of the ship, Saturn launched a rigid-hull inflatable boat (RHIB) to begin a search and rescue investigation. Once the RHIB crew arrived on-scene, Triple Suerte's master, Edward Jiminez, explained the crew had been stranded for four days due to the vessel's lifeless battery.
Saturn's crew of about 120 civil service mariners and 40 Sailors were happy to help the stranded mariners.
Saturn's engineers rendered assistance by providing a new battery. Jiminez accepted the battery and prepared his vessel to return to its homeport of .
"We gave them water, food, fuel and even batteries just to get them going so that they could make it back home safely and they get to sail another day," said Saturn's Cargo Mate Kelvin Battle.
"I'm glad I was in a position to assist the Saturn in helping those three men and am very proud to be part of our successful search and rescue operation," said Operations Specialist 3rd Class Daniel Reynolds.
"It means a lot to me knowing that even junior Sailors like myself can make a difference in this world, that even we have the power to impact another person's life for the better," said Reynolds.
Saturn is one of the U.S. Navy's four combat stores ships. Owned and operated by Military Sealift Command, these ships provide underway replenishment of supplies to Navy combatant ships at sea.
Saturn is deployed to Latin America and the Caribbean, under the operational control of U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command (NAVSO)/ U.S. 4th Fleet, providing logistical support to counter illicit-trafficking missions in the U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) area of focus, which encompasses Central and South America, and the Caribbean.
NAVSO, the Navy component of SOUTHCOM, acts in concert with other SOUTHCOM components, coalition forces and joint task forces to promote peace, stability and prosperity in the SOUTHCOM area of focus in . Fourth Fleet is the numbered fleet assigned to NAVSO and exercises operational responsibility for U.S. Navy units that temporarily operate in the SOUTHCOM area of focus.