Coast Guard to Suspend Search for Missing Plane
The search is scheduled to be suspended for a missing Brooksville family at sunset today (Feb. 14).
TAMPA BAY – U.S. Coast Guard officials say they are scheduled to suspend the search at sunset today (Feb. 14) for a missing Brooksville family near Cedar Key.
Jasper Jerrels, 65, his fiance Hue Singletary, and Jerrels’ 17-year-old son were aboard a single-engine plane en route from Brooksville to Cedar Key Sunday (Feb. 12) when they went missing.
As of noon today, the Coast Guard and partner agencies conducted more than 30 searches, covering more than 2,016 square nautical miles in more than 50 hours searching for them.
“It is with a heavy heart and our deepest condolences that we make the decision to suspend the search this evening,” said Capt. Holly Najarian, Sector St. Petersburg commander. “We keep the family and friends of these three individuals in our thoughts and prayers as they go through this difficult time.”
At 5:21 p.m. Sunday, watch standers from Sector St. Petersburg received a report from the Flight Service Station Gainesville, stating a white single-engine plane with red and blue stripes had failed to arrive in Cedar Key by noon.
An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter air crew from Air Station Clearwater and a 27-foot Special Purpose Craft-Shallow Water boat crew from Station Yankeetown launched and began the search, and watch standers at Sector St. Petersburg issued an urgent marine information broadcast.
At 9:06 a.m. Monday, a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission marine unit located an aircraft seat matching the description of the interior of the missing plane, and search and rescue crews located a small debris field.
At 8:51 a.m. Tuesday, an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter air crew located a deceased individual approximately six miles southwest of Cedar Key in the vicinity of the debris field. A 29-foot Response Boat-Small II boat crew from Station Yankeetown recovered and transferred the remains to local authorities for identification.
Crews from Air Station Clearwater, Station Yankeetown, Sector St. Petersburg, the Coast Guard Cutter Seahawk, Citrus County, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Levy County Fire and Rescue, and Cedar Key Fire and Rescue, alongside commercial salvage companies and multiple good Samaritans helped in the search.
“We want to thank all of our local and state partners for providing professional support throughout our search efforts,” Najarian said.
For information about Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater, go to uscg.mil.
Coast Guard | Jasper Jerrels | Hue Singletary | Missing Plane | Cedar Key | TB Reporter
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