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Search For Missing Boater Scaled Back

Gulf Islands National Seashore

National Park News

On Tuesday, the multi-agency search for off-duty Ocean Springs police officer Stephen Bond, missing since the boat he was in capsized on Sunday, reached a peak, both within and outside park boundaries, despite the challenges imposed by a six- to seven-foot chop throughout the search area. The NPS employed a 41-foot vessel and two smaller patrol boats to search the waters surrounding the four islands within the search area and to transport personnel to search the islands by foot and ATV. The NPS-led teams were comprised of twelve park employees and nine employees from Ocean Springs PD. No clues were found. On Wednesday, the participating agencies – the park, the Coast Guard, and state and local agencies – begun scaling back search efforts, with the Coast Guard focusing on an area about 20 miles off-shore in the Gulf of Mexico, based on ocean current modeling. The accident is believed to have occurred within park waters roughly a mile off of Horn Island and the investigation is therefore being conducted jointly by the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources and the NPS.



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