CNN reports that the man was last seen by his sister at a bar on a Carnival Cruise Line ship on Wednesday night. The sister said her brother left the bar around 11pm to use the restroom and never returned to his room.
She reported him missing around noon on Thursday, according to a statement given to CNN from Carnival spokesperson Matt Lupoli.
He said the ship "retraced its route to support the search and rescue," and was later released by the Coast Guard to continue its route toward Cozumel, Mexico.
The ship departed from New Orleans on Wednesday.
The cruise ship crew alerted the Coast Guard to the missing man on Thursday around 2:30pm, which began a multi-crew search using air and sea units.
The missing man was eventually found responsive and was transported to waiting emergency personnel at the New Orleans Lakefront Airport, according to Coast Guard officials.
The man had apparently fallen overboard and was found by another vessel. Coast Guard rescuers found him on the other ship and hoisted him up into a helicopter for transfer to medical personnel.
A passenger who spoke with CNN, Mike Anderson, told the outlet that he noticed security personnel searching for the man on the ship and flashing photos of the man to other passengers using their phones.