Prince William Rescues Shipwrecked Russians From Irish Sea

11/27/2011 at 09:45 AM EST

Prince William Rescue Mission in Irish Sea
Prince William
John Stillwell/Landov
He had a fairytale wedding – and he lives an action hero's life.

Prince William helped save the lives of Russian seamen whose cargo vessel sank in the Irish Sea off the coast of North Wales early Sunday morning, according to various reports.

William, who serves as Flight Lt. William Wales in the Royal Air Force, was co-pilot in a four-man rescue helicopter crew that responded to a mayday call that went out at approximately 2 a.m., when the vessel Swanland's hull cracked in bad weather.

They saved two men early Sunday morning, airlifting them to safety at William's base on the Welsh island of Anglesey. The body of one of Swanland's crew has since been recovered and five are still missing.

"We know that at least some of [the missing] are wearing immersion suits and have strobe lighting with them," Jim Green, a coastguard spokesman, said Sunday. "However, sea conditions are challenging at best."

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