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Dennis A. Mojica


Coast Guard Medal

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Awarded for actions during the Peace Time Awards

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Coast Guard Medal to Machinery Technician Third Class Dennis A. Mojica, United States Coast Guard, for heroism while serving aboard U.S.C.G.C. CUSHING (WPB 1321) during the early morning of 15 July 2001. While operating 20 nautical miles east of the British Virgin Islands, the CUSHING detected and pursued the M/V DOUBLE IMPACT, which was suspected of being engaged in migrant smuggling. At the conclusion of the pursuit, the DOUBLE IMPACT capsized, throwing more than 25 migrants into the sea. Displaying exceptional bravery and courage, Petty Officer MOJICA volunteered to enter the water to attempt to save an unconscious infant who was floating face down and had drifted over 20 yards from able adults. Despite having no training as a rescue swimmer, Petty Officer Mojica donned a lifejacket and entered the debris-filled seas in complete darkness as considerable swells carried the infant further from CUSHING. Due to the distance of the infant from the ship, Petty Officer Mojica was unable to use a tether during his perilous swim. Undaunted, Petty Officer Mojica recovered the baby and swam unassisted back to CUSHING. After climbing back aboard, Petty Officer Mojica assisted in resuscitating the infant, who was not breathing. The infant was later evacuated by helicopter, treated for near drowning at a St. Thomas Hospital, and released several days later. Medical personnel later confirmed that without Petty Officer Mojica's swift and courageous action, the infant would have certainly perished. Petty Officer Mojica demonstrated remarkable initiative, exceptional fortitude and daring in spite of imminent personal danger in this rescue. His courage and devotion to duty are most heartily commended and are in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Coast Guard.

General Orders: U.S. Coast Guard Historian's Office

Action Date: 15-Jul-01

Service: Coast Guard

Rank: Electronics Technician Second Class