Coast Guard calls off search for missing Ft. Myers, Fla., man

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. – The Coast Guard called off its search at 7:08 p.m. today for a missing Ft. Myers, Fla., man who was reported overdue from a kayak trip off the coast of Pt. Pleasant Beach, N.J., Wednesday.

Frank D’Alessandro, 52, was reported missing at about 1:30 p.m. Wednesday. Coast Guard crews located an overturned kayak about nine miles off the coast of Pt. Pleasant, which was later confirmed by the Pt. Pleasant Beach Police Department to be the one rented by D’Alessandro.

The Coast Guard searched an area from Sandy Hook, N.J., to Barnegat Light, N.J., and out 24 miles off the coast. The entire search area was about 1,300 square miles.

In all, Coast Guard crews searched more than 5,700 overlapping square miles. Coast Guard assets logged about 80 combined total search hours, conducting 30 separate search patterns.

Searching for D’Alessandro were:

* Boat crews from Coast Guard Station Manasquan Inlet, N.J.
* Boat crews from Coast Guard Station Barnegat Light, N.J.
* HH-65 Dolphin helicopter rescue crews from Coast Guard Air Station Atlantic City
* C-130 Hercules airplane crews from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C.
* The Coast Guard Cutter Albacore, an 87-foot coastal patrol boat homeported in Virginia Beach, Va.
* A C-130 Hercules airplane crew from the Air National Guard
* Boat crews from the New Jersey State Police Marine Division
* Members from the Pt. Pleasant Beach Police Department

“Calling off a search is one of the most difficult decisions we have to make,” said Brian Neilan, a search and rescue coordinator at the Fifth Coast Guard District in Portsmouth, Va. “We saturated the area with Coast Guard assets, and I feel confident we covered the area as much as we possibly could. We have suspended the active search, but will resume searching if any new information is obtained, which would assist us in locating Mr. D’Alessandro.”

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