Contact Us Press Releases AFRICOM Portal
U.S. Sailor Helps Save Drowning Woman in Gabon
The Gabonese Chief of Naval Forces, Captain Paul Biving Nziengui, formally recognized an American sailor January 17 for his part in helping to save the life of a drowning Gabonese woman.<br />
The Gabonese Chief of Naval Forces, Captain Paul Biving Nziengui, formally recognized an American sailor January 17 for his part in helping to save the life of a drowning Gabonese woman.



American Petty Officer 2nd Class Ronald Saucedo, stationed onboard the amphibious dock landing ship USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43), used basic life-saving procedures that are part of the Africa Partnership Station military-to-military training program currently taking place in Gabon. Saucedo is a native of Rockville, Maryland.



Biving presented the American sailor with an award during a January 17 graduation ceremony for Gabonese maritime professionals who completed a week-long training program. Saucedo also received a Letter of Commendation from U.S. Captain John Nowell, commander of Africa Partnership Station (APS).



On January 14, Saucedo was on liberty at Sogara Beach with three other APS Sailors when they witnessed four men carrying a body from the water.



"As we walked up to the crowd of people on the beach, they saw my dog tags and said, 'U.S. Marines, U.S. Marines,'" Saucedo said.



Saucedo assisted the victim by administering Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR).



"I checked her pulse and airway. Then I tilted her head back, and somebody volunteered to do mouth-to-mouth [resuscitation] while I did chest compressions," he said. "Shortly after, the water gushed out of her nose and she came to. As soon as she started regaining consciousness, we made sure she was OK, and then tried to get additional medical help."



Saucedo described the experience as scary but credited his reaction to the training he received in the U.S. Navy. "I was afraid when I began chest compressions, but my training just kicked in," he said.



The basic life-saving training that Saucedo received is the same training that APS is teaching maritime professionals from West and Central African countries.



The Navyyâ?s new Cooperative Maritime Strategy emphasizes the role of U.S. sailors in working alongside their counterparts from other countries.



"Petty Officer Saucedooâ?s actions exemplify what APS is all about," Nowell said, "building trust with the African people so that we can strengthen collaborative partnerships."
PARTNERSHIPS OPERATIONS READINESS