Coast Guard searching for missing boater near Key West

KEY WEST, Fla. – Coast Guard aircraft and small boats are searching for a missing boater in an area southeast of Key West after his abandoned boat was found.

The personal effects on board the boat belong to David Schermerhorn, a 48-year-old male that has an apartment on Boca Chica. The boat is registered to Schermerhorn as well.

Coast Guard received a call around 8:30 a.m., Saturday, from the Monroe County Sheriffs Office dispatch stating a deputy happened upon an aground boat on the south side of Boca Chica, Fla. The deputy described the boat as a 21-foot center console with no one on board, a dive flag up, and approximately 100 feet of anchor line off the bow that was severed and missing the anchor. The deputy also noticed personal items on board that included a wallet, brief case, and cell phone.

The Coast Guard immediately launched a small boat from Station Key West and an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Air Station Miami to search the area. An HU-25 Falcon jet from Air Station Miami is searching this evening.

A Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission boat is also assisting in the search.

The search is being focused on an area between the spot where the boat was located just south of Boca Chica and a position approximately five miles south of Key West. The GPS on board was used to find the last plotted position of the boat near Middle Sambo, approximately five miles south of Key West.

Coast Guard, MCSO, and FWC officials are continuing the search for Schermerhorn. If anyone has any information on Schermerhorn they are asked to contact the Coast Guard at 305-295-9700.

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