Crewman missing near St. Matthew Island

A search for a man last seen aboard a fishing boat north of St. Matthew Island on Sept. 27 was suspended on Sept. 28 by the Coast Guard.

“The painful reality is that we can’t always bring people home,” said Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Jared Buchmiller, 17th District command duty officer on the case.

A Coast Guard aircrew, joined by crew of the fishing vessels Clipper Epic, Frontier Spirit and Frontier Mariner, is searched for two days for the man reported missing from the 162-foot Clipper Epic, some 60 miles north of St. Matthew Island in the Bering Sea.

A Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak C-130 Hercules aircrew came from Kotzebue after watchstanders in the 17th District command center in Juneau issued an urgent marine information broadcast. The Coast Guard Cutter Douglas Munro also was assisting in the search.

Searchers were facing 15 MPH winds, five-foot seas, 10-mile visibility, air temperatures of 48 degrees and water temperatures of 50 degrees.