Search ended for man missing off Maui - Soundings Online

Search ended for man missing off Maui

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JUNE 28 - The Coast Guard officially suspended its search last week for a 74-year-old sailor who reportedly went missing after his boat ran aground and was found pounding against rocks at Kiakeana Point on the south coast of Maui, Hawaii.

Coast Guard officials received an EPIRB transmission from William Norcross’ 41-foot sailboat, Na Hoku O Kalani, 2 a.m. last Tuesday. A Coast Guard helicopter was sent to the source of the transmission and once Norcross’ boat was found a rescue swimmer was lowered to the site.

Officials said Norcross set sail June 19, alone, from Ma’alea Harbor and was planning to return to his home in Kailua-Kona. He was on the final leg of a journey from Hawaii (the Big Island) to Alaska, south to Mexico and back, the report says.

Coast Guard officials report they had previously come to Norcross’ aid June 15 when he became disoriented. He thought he was off the coast of the Big Island, but was actually off Maui. At that time, the crew noted there were three PFDs aboard. The following day, the report says, officials assisted Norcross when his boat broke free from its mooring.

According to a news report, the rescue swimmer who responded to the distress signal was unable to locate Norcross but noted one of the PFDs was missing.