Missing sailors prompt four-day coastal search

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DEC. 17 — Two Canadian men who were thought to have been lost at sea were towed into Georgetown, S.C., at 8:30 p.m. on Dec. 13 by a commercial tow company, according to the Coast Guard press release.

The two men, Brock Argyle and Paul Shore, both in their 50s, had set off from Lewes Harbor Marina in Delaware, bound for Panama in their 30-foot single-masted sailing vessel Pride on Nov. 30. After not checking in with a friend on Dec. 2 as scheduled, relatives of the men contacted the Coast Guard on Dec. 9, and the extensive search began, according to the release.

The sailors had not filed a float plan with friends or relatives, nor carried an EPIRB signal with them. As a result, Coast Guard stations from Portsmouth, Va., Elizabeth City, N.C., and Clearwater, Fla., searched more than 49,960 square nautical miles from Delaware to Miami, according to the release. Later, officials discovered the men were caught in a heavy storm on Dec. 2, cutting off communication and driving the vessel off-course.

“We here in the Coast Guard’s Atlantic Area Command Center are all pleased to learn of the fortunate ending to this case,” said Lt. Christopher White in the release. “However, the S/V Pride crew and all boaters can assist themselves during future boat trips by filing a float plan with friends or relatives and instructing them to contact the Coast Guard at the first sign that something isn’t quite right.”

— Elizabeth Ellis