Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Two Rescued, Four Crew Still Missing

The captain and crew of the charter boat Be Cool went missing last week shortly after leaving with a charter, CNN reported earlier today. The vessel, a 47-foot sportfishermen, "made several erratic movements before heading south" about halfway into her voyage, according to the vessel's global positioning system (GPS). The boat was found floating 160-miles south of Bimini. The captain, Jake Branam, his wife Kelly Branam, and two crew members, Scott Campbell and Sammy Cary, are among the missing.

The Coast Guard reports it has rescued two of the six missing boaters. The names of the rescued are Guillermo Zarabozo and Kirby Archer. Archer is being investigated, as he has the same name as a man who stole over $90,000 from an Arkansas Wal-Mart back in January. Foul play has not been ruled out.

According to Coast Guard reports, family members reported Joe Cool overdue at approximately 5:45 p.m. Sunday after the vessel failed to return to Miami Beach Marina. The crew of the 110-foot cutter Pea Island found the vessel late Sunday. The cutter's crew said the abandoned vessel was in disarray with the life-raft missing.

Zarabozo and Archer were found by an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter approximately 12 miles north of that location and taken to the cutter Confidence. The Coast Guard immediately began searching with a HC-130 aircraft from Elizabeth City, N.C., the Cutter Confidence, the Cutter Pea Island and an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Miami deployed to the Confidence.

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