Cowes Lifeboat Station

Andrea Rises to the Challenge of Becoming Fifty

19th July 2014

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Andrea being secured to the winch by a member of the helicopter crew.

Cowes lifeboat crew member Andrea Vaughan experienced a lift-up in more ways than one today.

First she had reached the age of 50, and then she was winched aboard the Solent Coastguard helicopter during an exercise involving the Cowes station’s Atlantic 85 lifeboat.

It’s up and away to the hovering Augusta Westland 139.

It’s up and away to the hovering Augusta Westland 139.

Andrea, who lives in Gurnard, said later, “It was birthday present I shall always remember; it was really exciting. I am very grateful to the RNLI for agreeing to me being the member of crew to be winched up, and for the professionalism of the helicopter crew.”

She was also pleased that the RNLI had recently changed its policy for RIB crew members to retire at 50, but instead – subject to passing a medical every two years – go on to 55. Having served for just three years as a crew member, her volunteer role would have been all too short otherwise.

Author: George Chastney, Lifeboat Press Officer.

Photo Credit: RNLI/Cowes