Search for missing boaters off Florida's Gulf Coast suspended

Search for missing boaters off Florida's Gulf Coast suspended

Search for missing boaters off Florida's Gulf Coast suspended

The Coast Guard and partner agencies have conducted 22 searches since Tuesday covering more than 400 miles.

A crew member, 27-year-old Andrew Dillman, jumped in after him, but neither has been seen since.

"Suspending a search is the most hard decision I have to make in my position, and despite our best efforts, we were unable to reunite Andrew and Jie with their families".

Andrew Dillman, 27, from NY, and Jie Lou, 21, a Colorado State University student from China, went missing when the current pulled them away on Tuesday night.

Dillman, of NY, was part of the local charter crew for the 71-foot "Jaguar" vessel. The vessel left Maximo at approximately 4:00 pm. The men were forced to return to the boat when winds picked up and the water became turbulent, but Jie didn't make it.

A boat from Eckerd College searches for two missing boaters off of Pass-A-Grille Beach, in choppy Gulf waters, March 15, 2017 in St. Pete Beach, Fla. Students told investigators that no one warned them about the unsafe conditions in the water, which included a riptide warning.

Five of the students began jumping into the water.

The current pulled the students from the boat, and all but Luo were able to make it back to the boat.

"These students hired this company to take them out for a cruise", he said.

Authorities said Dillman jumped into the water when he saw Luo was struggling in the swift currents.

Davis contacted the United States Coast Guard to report the incident and request assistance.

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