POINT PLEASANT — Arriving at the mission in the suburbs of Houston inundated by Hurricane Harvey, Senior Airman John Kosequat looked down from a helicopter, surveying a scene unlike any he had experienced before.
“We get down there … we see people start to come out of their doors and windows … just waving for us and calling us, so pretty soon I was going down on the hook and getting right into the water,” he said of the scene in Houston, Texas, on Aug. 29.
“I wasn’t expecting to be in the water as quickly as I was but within five minutes I was in almost neck-deep water. I went on someone’s front porch and what would’ve been a road was pretty much a river at this point.”
For the Point Pleasant resident and the 120 members of the New York Air National Guard 106th Res- cue Wing, their motto — “That Others May Live” — sums up their mission to ensure the safety of men, women, children — entire families and even pets — from the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey in Texas and parts of Louisiana.
The Rescue Wing members recently returned to their Westhampton Beach base after completing a week-long mission during which they rescued 546 people trapped in the flood- waters caused by the massive storm.
“It has been one of the most gratifying times of my career,” Senior Airman Kosequat, a Point Pleasant Borough High School graduate, said.
“The motto, ‘That Others May Live,’ is our absolute mission and goal and that is what we spend so much time training for and just everything we do is for that.”
For more on this story, read The Ocean Star—on newsstands Friday or online in our e-Edition.