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Missing fisherman reported off Kona Coast

MEDIA RELEASE

Devin Johnson

Devin Johnson

Big Island police have opened a missing person case in connection with a missing fisherman.

Devin Johnson, 23, of Kamuela was last seen on a commercial fishing boat 60 miles south of Kona. He and his brother were taking turns tending the lines while the other slept. When Johnson’s brother woke up at 2 a.m. Friday (November 13), he discovered that Johnson was missing.

The U.S. Coast Guard and sailors on private vessels are searching for him. He is described as Caucasian, 5-foot-11, 160 pounds with brown eyes and brown hair.

Police ask that anyone with information on his whereabouts call Acting Lieutenant Myra Iwamoto at 326-4646, extension 281, or the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311. Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

UPDATE: U.S. Coast Guard continues search for missing fisherman who went overboard off the Big Island
Nov. 13, 2009

HONOLULU — The U.S. Coast Guard continues the search for Devin Johnson, a 25-year-old fisherman last seen early Friday morning before he went overboard approximately 60 miles west of the Big Island. Search patterns have been planned for assets through tonight into Saturday morning.

On scene today were crew members aboard an HH-65 Dolphin rescue helicopter, C-130 long-range search plane from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point, and the 18-person crew from the Coast Guard Cutter Kiska, a 110-foot patrol boat. The Kiska arrived on scene at 5 p.m., and the crew is coordinating their efforts with all rescuers in the area.

Rescuers aboard U.S. Navy SH-60 Seahawks, from HSL Squadron 37 at Marine Corps Base Hawaii, are also assisting on the search; which will have covered by nightfall more than 2,000 square miles – an area twice the size of the Oahu.

All members of the Coast Guard rescue party will search throughout the night. A C-130 search plane and a Navy P-3 Orion fixed-wing aircraft are slated for a first-light search Saturday morning.

Weather in the area is reported to be seas of eight feet and winds from the southeast at 25 mph. Devon Johnson was last seen wearing an olive green sweater and black shorts, but no life jacket. Anyone with further information about the missing man is asked to contact the Coast Guard’s 24-hour Honolulu Harbor command center at 808-842-2600 or via VHF marine band radio channel 16.
NOTE: Media are asked to contact the Coast Guard’s public affairs team at 808-535-3230 for more information about this release. Imagery is not available at this time.

MEDIA RELEASE BY U.S. Coast Guard

HONOLULU — U.S. Coast Guard crews are searching for a fisherman who went missing approximately 60 miles west of the Big Island Friday.

Rescue crews aboard an HH-65 Dolphin rescue helicopter and C-130 long-range aircraft from Air Station Barbers Point are on scene and searching for any signs of Devin Johnson, a 25-year-old fisherman who went overboard.

A second fisherman aboard the 34-foot Kealia, Dennis Johnson, stopped the vessel and called for help when he noticed his crewmate missing. Dennis and Devon Johnson are twin brothers. The two were about to switch helm duties aboard the vessel when Dennis noticed his brother missing.

Dennis Johnson called the Kealia’s owner, who in turned called the Coast Guard in Honolulu at 2:45 a.m. Friday. The Coast Guard launched the air crews immediately and two 110-foot patrol boats, the Honolulu-based Galveston Islandand Hilo-based Kiska, were underway before sunrise and en route.

Devon Johnson was last seen wearing an olive green sweater and black shorts, but no life jacket.

“The dark clothing and absence of a personal flotation device does present some difficulties with the search,” said U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Barry Compagnoni, the commanding officer of Sector Honolulu and the senior officer directing the search. “But, we will continue to put as many assets out there as we can. We are hopeful we’ve put together an accurate search area.”

The Coast Guard has searched more than 1,600 square miles — an area more than twice the size of the island of Maui — and has asked the HSL Squadron 37 at Marine Corps Base Hawaii for aerial assistance with the search. The HSL Squadron 37 flies SH-60 Seahawks.

Also expected to join the search are as many as five private fishing vessels from the Kailua-Kona side of the Big Island and a family friend with an aircraft. The Coast Guard will coordinate the efforts of those searchers once the patrol boat Kiska is on scene. The 18-person crew was expected to arrive on scene early this afternoon.

Weather in the area is reported to be seas of eight feet and winds from the southeast at 25 mph. Anyone with further information about the missing man is asked to contact the Coast Guard’s 24-hour Honolulu Harbor command center at 808-842-2600 or via VHF marine band radio channel 16.

3 Responses to “Missing fisherman reported off Kona Coast”

  1. We feel positive that he can be found… he is young, strong and knows the sea at many levels. Friends in California are thinking positively. Best wishes always to the rest of his family in the Big Island.

  2. James Santos says:

    I worked with his brother Anthony and he spoke highly of his fishing trips with his brother. I pray that he is alive or already at home.

  3. Margaret corkery says:

    Betty and Denis and family are thinking and praying for the safe return of Devin. From cousins in Ireland.

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