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7th District Southeast Public Affairs
U.S. Coast Guard

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News Release

July 16, 2014

Contact: 7th Coast Guard District


Office: (305) 415-6683

UPDATE: Coast Guard suspends search for missing diver in Bahamas

MIAMI — The Coast Guard has suspended the search Wednesday, for a man who went missing during a commercial shark diving venture in the vicinity of West End, Bahamas, Sunday night.

Missing is John E. Petty, 63, from Longview, Texas.

Coast Guard 7th District command center watchstanders were contacted by the captain of the commercial dive vessel Shear Water late Sunday night stating that Petty went shark diving with eight others and did not return.

The Coast Guard immediately launched multiple air and sea assets that searched alongside Royal Bahamas Police Force. Coast Guard crews aboard the following assets who assisted:

  • Coast Guard Cutter Dolphin, homeported in Miami.
  • Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater C-130 Hercules aircraft.
  • Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater MH-60 Jayhawk rescue helicopter.

Dive gear believed to belong to Petty was found during the extensive search that covered more than 4,600 miles, lasting 64 hours of total search time.

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