MIAMI – U.S. Coast Guard searchers recovered items Wednesday from a “debris field” left by the 29-foot sailboat of a family reported missing off southwest Florida.
Later Wednesday, the Coast Guard tweeted that two kayaks being pulled by the sailboat were found as well, and that the search continues for the father and his three children.
After the debris was spotted by air in the Gulf of Mexico, the Coast Guard contacted a nearby boater who collected several items and held them for a Coast Guard boat, Capt. Gregory Case said.
The tarp, water jugs, six life jackets and a propane tank were then identified by the brother of 45-year-old Ace Kimberly, who had been living on the sailboat with his children for a year.
Kimberly left Sarasota on Sunday, with 13-year-old Roger, 15-year-old Donny and 17-year-old Rebecca, for Fort Myers to have the boat repaired.
Kimberly’s brother alerted the Coast Guard on Tuesday after they failed to arrive, Case said. The brother said their last word came Sunday, when Ace Kimberly told him they were sailing in “6-foot seas and thunderstorms.”