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Press Release | May 31, 2023

Coast Guard suspends search for missing cruise ship passenger near Florida

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Coast Guard suspended the search, Wednesday, for a missing 35-year-old man who went overboard from a cruise ship 186 miles east of Jacksonville, Florida.

Missing is Ronnie Peale.

Coast Guard crews searched more than 5,171 square miles and 60 hours.

Carnival Cruise Lines personnel contacted Coast Guard watchstanders at 6:36 p.m., Monday, reporting that a passenger fell off the cruise ship Carnival Magic and entered the water.

Coast Guard watchstanders launched air crews and diverted the Coast Guard Cutter Escanaba (WMEC 907) to conduct search and rescue efforts from the air and on the water. U.S. Navy ships and aircraft in the region also assisted in the search efforts.

“The Seventh Coast Guard District dispatched multiple search and rescue assets as soon as we were notified of the missing person. Our command center watchstanders provided search patterns to cutter crews and air crews who actively searched from Monday through Wednesday evening,” said Lt. Cmdr. Christopher Hooper, Coast Guard District Seven search and rescue mission coordinator. “The decision to suspend the active search efforts pending further development is never one we take lightly. We offer our most sincere condolences to Mr. Peale’s family and friends.”

Coast Guard assets involved in the search included:

  • Air Station Clearwater HC-130 Hercules aircrews
  • Coast Guard Cutter Escanaba (WMEC 907) crew
  • Air Station Elizabeth City HC-130 Hercules aircrew
  • Air Station Miami HC-144 Ocean Sentry crew

Anyone with new information is asked to call the Coast Guard District Seven Command Center at 305-415-6800. 

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