MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW Press Release) —The Coast Guard suspended its search for two overdue boaters off the coast of Myrtle Beach at approximately 7:30 p.m., Sunday.
The overdue boaters are Joseph McFadden, 77 years old, and Michael Lawrence, 61 years old. Both have been missing since Wednesday.
Coast Guard crews searched 11,655 square miles and conducted 50 search patterns over a period of more than three days.
“Suspending a search is a truly difficult decision,” said Capt. Gary Tomasulo, the commanding officer of Coast Guard Sector Charleston. “We pride ourselves in rescuing survivors to reunite them with their loved ones. We take into account various different factors when making this decision, so it is never one that is made easily. Our search is suspended, pending any new and reliable information. We understand this is a difficult time for the families and we offer our thoughts and prayers to them.”
Crewmembers aboard various assets from Coast Guard Air Facility Charleston, S.C., Air Station Savannah, Ga., Air Station Clearwater, Fla., and Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., have participated in the search. The Coast Guard Auxiliary has also contributed an airplane in the search.
Other agencies that have been involved in the search include crews from the North Charleston Police Department, Mount Pleasant Police Department, Charleston County Sheriff’s Office and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.
Charleston County Consolidated Dispatch first notified the Coast Guard Sector Charleston’s command center of the overdue boaters Thursday morning. The missing boaters had reportedly departed on a fishing trip, in the vicinity of the Charleston Jetties, Wednesday morning and were scheduled to return Wednesday evening. By Thursday the pair was overdue and their truck and trailer were found still parked at the pier at Remleys Point, S.C.
Anyone with any information that could assist search crews are urged to contact the Coast Guard Sector Charleston command center at: 843-740-7050.
For more information contact the Coast Guard 7th District Public Affairs Detachment Jacksonville at 305-318-1864.
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