Coast Guard, others search for missing man in York River, Va.

A Coast Guard 29-foot Response Boat-SmallPORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard and local agencies are searching for a missing man Tuesday in the York River who was last seen in Gloucester Point near the Gloucester Point Boat Ramp.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Hampton Roads in Portsmouth were notified at 10:55 a.m. Tuesday by the Virginia Marine Police that 58-year-old Michael Ballard was reported missing after he did not return from his Monday kayaking trip.

A 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew and a 38-foot Special Purpose Craft-Shallow water crew from Coast Guard Training Center Yorktown, a 29-foot Response Boat-Small crew from Coast Guard Station Milford Haven and an MH-60 Jawhawk helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina, all responded and remain on scene searching.

Assets from the Gloucester County Sheriff’s Office, the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries and the Virginia Marine Police are also involved in the search.

Ballard’s wife made the initial report that her husband left home Monday morning for the Gloucester Point Boat Ramp with a 12-foot, forest green, sit-in kayak and was due back home that evening.

Ballard’s vehicle was found parked at the ramp but there is no sign of his kayak. Security cameras near the boat ramp show Ballard arriving with the kayak attached to his vehicle.

“Our crews are actively searching the area for Mr. Ballard,” said Lt. Sean Stewart, command duty officer for the case. “Anyone with information related to his whereabouts should call the Sector Hampton Roads Command Center at 757-668-5555.”

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