Molokini Search Suspended for Illinois Man
By Wendy Osher
The search for a snorkeler last seen in waters off of Molokini Island on Tuesday night, has since been suspended as of 1:25 p.m. on Thursday, June 13, officials said.
“After exhaustive efforts searching with the Maui Fire Department, Ocean Safety, and the Kahoʻolawe Island Reserve Commission over the last few days, it’s with a heavy heart that we suspend this search,” said Lieutenant Commander Tim List from the US Coast Guard Sector Honolulu in a statement today.
Lt. Cmdr. List, who also served as the rescue mission coordinator in the search for 56-year-old Paul Balckburn of Illinois said, “Our thoughts and prayers are with the Blackburn family at this difficult time.”
Authorities say Blackburn was snorkeling with his son near Molokini Crater, a popular tourist and visitor destination, when he went missing.
According to an updated announcement issued by the US Coast Guard, authorities say the agency searched a total of more than 448 square miles of land and sea.
The Coast Guard was also assisted by personnel from other local agencies that used fire boats, jet skis and helicopters to help in the search.
***Supporting information courtesy US Coast Guard.