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The Freedom-variant littoral combat ship USS Cooperstown rescued a civilian mariner off the coast of South Carolina while conducting routine operations Saturday, March 11, 2023. USS Cooperstown is assigned to Littoral Combat Ship Squadron 2.

The Freedom-variant littoral combat ship USS Cooperstown rescued a civilian mariner off the coast of South Carolina while conducting routine operations Saturday, March 11, 2023. USS Cooperstown is assigned to Littoral Combat Ship Squadron 2. (Aaron J. Ruther/U.S. Navy)

The USS Cooperstown rescued a person in distress off the coast of South Carolina on Saturday.

While conducting routine operations, USS Cooperstown received notification of a civilian sailing vessel in distress, a Navy news release said. Cooperstown diverted course and deployed its search and rescue swimmer to recover the stranded mariner, who was then transferred to U.S. Coast Guard Station Charleston.

“I’m grateful for the training the Navy provided me to be able to respond and rescue the Mariner in distress, and thankful we were able to help,” said Gunner’s Mate Chief Petty Officer Justin Olson, the ship’s primary search and rescue swimmer, in the release.

Cooperstown is a Freedom-variant littoral combat ship that was christened in February 2020 and delivered to the Navy in September 2022. Named for Cooperstown, N.Y., its homeport is Naval Station Mayport, Fla.

Brian McElhiney is reporter for Stars and Stripes based in Okinawa, Japan. He has worked as a music reporter and editor for publications in New Hampshire, Vermont, New York and Oregon. One of his earliest journalistic inspirations came from reading Stars and Stripes as a kid growing up in Okinawa.

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