Nightly News   |  January 18, 2010

Survivors, rescue workers welcome a new life

Jan. 18: The men and women of the USS Carl Vinson, a floating trauma center 17 miles off the coast of Port-au-Prince, have been saving lives of quake victims. Over the weekend, they eagerly welcomed a new patient. NBC's Robert Bazell reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> thank you, sir.

>> did you hear those thank yous? there's a lesson for every child. incredible politeness after waiting six days for one bottle of water. the 82nd airborne has water distribution working on a hillside where they had been dropping it from the air only to cause fights and skirmishes for water.

>>> there was a moment this past friday, when we saw it arrive, and so we took these pictures. that's the aircraft carrier carl vincent . it was visible on the horizon, that meant help had arrived. the men and women of the vincent have been saving lives and over the weekend they welcomed a new one. our report from robert bazell .

>> reporter: a navy sea hawk helicopter transports casualties to the ship off the coast of haiti. patients like vinion joseph, whose shattered leg had been so infected it had to be amputated. the ship's senior medical officer told me the medical capacity is small, set up to treat sailors on this and other ships in the carrier group .

>> this is our general medical surgical ward that's occupied by patients as you can see.

>> reporter: at times since the earthqua earthquake, the medical staff has had to work 40-hour shifts. when the earthquake hit, the vincent was off the coast of florida, it was the closest of the american ships. it got here very quickly. the crew was thrilled to learn of the mission.

>> we couldn't wait to get here.

>> reporter: everybody's favorite case is jean berdie. the choppers brought her to the carl vincent when she gave birth to a baby boy saturday. she named him vincent in honor of the ship and crew. i got a chance to talk to her. the baby is perfectly healthy?

>> yes.

>> reporter: the medical staff of the carl vincent save many lives from injuries typical in earthquakes, but they take special pride that vincent is a sign that life in haiti will go on. robert bazell , nbc news offshore port-au-prince.

>>> that's our broadcast back in