The Coast Guard has suspended its search near Popponesset Island, Massachusetts, for a 21-year-old East Falmouth man who was last seen leaving Waquoit in a Boston Whaler. Several hours later, a Good Samaritan reported seeing the boat driving in circles with no one on board about 2 miles southeast of Popponesset Island at 12:30, p.m., June 21, 2011.
“It’s disappointing that we weren’t able to bring him home to his family … it’s always hard to come back empty-handed,” said Chief Petty Officer Brian Guarino, the officer in charge of Station Woods Hole, who was on scene for 8 hours on Tuesday.
Coast Guard crews from Station Woods Hole, Air Station Cape Cod and the Coast Guard Cutter Hammerhead extensively searched a total of 180 square miles for nearly 24 hours.
“We received a tremendous amount of help from the local police and fire departments, environmental police and harbormasters,” Guarino said. “Without these partners we wouldn’t have been able to fully saturate the area, especially in the shallow areas where our boats couldn’t go.”
Crews from the Coast Guard Auxiliary; Hyannis, Falmouth, and Massachusetts Marine Environmental Police; Popponesset Bay, Hyannis, Centerville, Cotuit, and Mashpee fire departments; Mashpee Police Department; and Hyannis and Popponesset Bay harbormasters also searched for the missing boater.