Turns out, writing "SOS" in big letters on the beach works. Three men were rescued after an American aircraft saw the letters and their vessel on the shore. This previously stranded three aren't the only ones who've used this tactic and succeeded. There were three men in 2016 who swam 2 miles to land after their boat capsized and were found by the U.S. Coast Guard after writing "HELP" in the sand. “Through coordination with multiple response organizations, we were able to save three members of our community and bring them back home to their families,” said Capt. Christopher Chase, commander of the U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam.