Coast Guard suspends search for family missing at sea

Ace Kimberly and his three kids - 13-year-old Roger, 15-year-old Donny, and 17-year-old Rebecca - went missing on a sailboat trip from Sarasota to Fort Myers on Sunday.

The Coast Guard on Saturday suspended the search for a Florida family last seen on a sailboat in the Gulf of Mexico.

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Cape Coral Fire and Rescue found the body Thursday morning, about 4 miles from where searchers found another body Wednesday, a Coast Guard news release said.

It was not clear if either body belonged to any of the four missing family members, and the Coast Guard said in a tweet the search for survivors will continue. "This is probably the most hard decision I ever have to make in this position".

The cause of the tragedy has yet to be determined. "They're all feeling what we're all feeling - anxious, upset and hoping for the best", he said. "We know there was bad weather..."

"It's hard when you don't find everything, you don't have anyone left to ask", Case said.

The Coast Guard is continuing to search for the other three family members. Case says the last word from the family came later Sunday when Kimberly told his brother they were sailing in "6-foot seas and thunderstorms".

A bucket containing personal items, such as birth certificates, was located by the Fort Myers Beach sector about 5 1/2 miles from where a body was recovered Wednesday afternoon. That's the case in the search for the Kimberly family who disappeared on Father's Day. Information about the discovery of the second body on Thursday is not yet available.

Picture of Kimberly family missing off Florida coast near Sanibel Island. All the debris was attributed to the missing sailboat. He was not heard from again.

"It's tough", Case said. "He didn't have their exact travel plans..."

The Coast Guard received no distress call from the vessel, he said.

U.S. Coast Guard crews had spotted what appeared to be a white flare early Thursday morning.

A debris field was found 37 miles off Sanibel Island, which sits a few miles off of Fort Myers' coast. More debris was found that included water jugs, tarps, life jackets, and throwable life rings.

  • Hannah Rogers