UDPATE: Coast Guard suspends search for missing fisherman

Baldwin County

UPDATE 11/30/19 10:50 AM: The USCG sent this update

Update: Coast Guard suspends search for person in the water in Mobile Bay, Alabama
NEW ORLEANS — The Coast Guard suspended its search, Saturday, for a person in the water in Mobile Bay, Alabama.
The Coast Guard and local agencies began searching Friday after watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Mobile received a report of a capsized boat in Mobile Bay. 
Coast Guard crews searched an area of 1,152 square nautical miles over the course of 29 hours but were unable to locate the missing crewmember.
Involved in the search were: 
Coast Guard Station Dauphin Island Response Boat-Medium boat crew
Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans MH-65 Dolphin-Helicopter crew
Daphne Search and Rescue
Alabama Department of Marine Resources
Alabama Law Enforcement Agency
Fort Morgan Search and Rescue Divers
Fort Morgan Park Rangers
Bon Secour Fire Department
Mobile Marine Police
Coast Guard Cutter Ridley
North Baldwin Sheriff’s Search and Rescue
Mobile Sheriff Flotilla
Coast Guard Air Station Mobile HC-144 Ocean Sentry aircrew 

USCG News Release

FORT MORGAN, Ala. (WKRG) — The shrimp boat that capsized near Fort Morgan Friday morning does regular business with Billy’s Seafood in Bon Secour, according to Billy Parks, the owner of the seafood market.

The ship, named “The Chief” capsized around 4 a.m., according to ALEA Marine Patrol. There were three people on board. The captain survived. The body of one crew member has been recovered. One is still missing.

Parks says he and the ship’s captain, Woody Jones are friends. Parks says three ship boats, including Jones’, were out Thursday night – and that Jones’ son-in-law was the first one to discover something was wrong.

“After looking and looking he couldn’t see him, he checked the radar and couldn’t see him, then he followed the diesel fuel skim on the water,” said Parks. Jones was eventually found clinging to floating ice chest, and his son-in-law pulled Jones onto his boat. “”Brought him in and put him in the ambulance here at my dock. But he was pretty banged up.”

Parks says his thoughts are with everyone impacted.

At last check, search teams scaled back their efforts when the sun went down. But multiple boats are still out on the water, and the search efforts will revamp in the morning.


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