Coast Guard and local agencies search for missing Coast Guardsman

Hawaii-Pacific Coast Guard NewsHONOLULU — The Honolulu Police Department, Honolulu Fire Department and U.S. Coast Guard are searching near Kaena Point, Oahu, for a Coast Guardsman whose whereabouts are unknown, Wednesday.

Petty Officer 1st Class Russell Matthews is an aviation survival technician from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point, Hawaii. His car was discovered in a parking lot and the Honolulu Police Department initiated a search of the area early Wednesday morning. The Honolulu Fire Department conducted an aerial, shoreline and offshore search for Matthews.

Honolulu Police Department contacted watchstanders at the Joint Rescue Coordination Center in Honolulu, notifying them that they had located Matthews’ car.

An MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point deployed to assist in the search at approximately 4 a.m., Wednesday. Two additional Dolphin searches have been conducted. The Coast Guard Cutter Galveston Island is searching offshore and a five member team from Coast Guard Station Honolulu has conducted a shoreline search.

On scene conditions are clear sky, calm winds and 20 to 30-foot breaking surf. It is not known if Matthews entered the water at Kaena Point Park.

“We are actively searching the area around Kaena Point by air, land and sea in close coordination with local first responders,” said Capt. Timothy Gilbride, Commanding Officer of Air Station Barbers Point. “In this difficult time we are providing our fullest support to the family, friends and coworkers of Petty Officer Matthews and ask that anyone with information as to his whereabouts contact authorities.”

Individuals with any information are asked to contact the Honolulu Police Department by dialing 911 or the Coast Guard Sector Command Center at (808) 842-2600.

Matthews has been stationed at Air Station Barbers Point since 2007 and has been in the Coast Guard since 1997.


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