January 18, 2021

‘Hearts too heavy’ as search for missing fishing crew ends

The Marine Joint Rescue Coordination Center said it would suspend the search for the five fishermen who went missing in the Gulf of Fundy on Wednesday afternoon.

N.S. The news came after a 36-hour search by the crew of Williams Saulis, captain of a Scalap ship from the town of Yarmouth. The case will now be handed over to the RCMP to handle the case of the missing.

The JRCC said the search covered a distance of 260 nautical miles by sea and air. A body was recovered Tuesday night, but its identity has not yet been made public.

CBC News reports that Aaron Coxwell, Leonard Gabriel, Don Forbes, Michael Drake and Geno Francis were the six people on board the boat with Captain Charles Roberts.

Chief William Saulis scallop fishing vessel is seen in November 2020. (Katherine Pickford)

Lori Phillips Wednesday afternoon her son Aaron Coxwell, 29, had been fishing with the ship’s captain for seven years. He said his body was not recovered Tuesday evening.

“I know he’s not coming back alive, but I want him to come back home,” he said in an interview.

“The province lost six great men. Although I did not know them, they had to be good. They were someone’s family. Someone did not see them. I hope they all come home.”

Just hours before the search was halted, a Cormorant helicopter from CFP Greenwood appeared in the air above Point Prime Lighthouse on Wednesday afternoon. (John Macroson)

Before he left for his last fishing trip, Coxwell went shopping with his son-in-law and wrapped up his gifts for the holidays.

His son had a high level of functional autism, Phillips said, and Captain Roberts took him under his wing.

“He was always there for him, he was his protector,” he said, adding that his son “had his daily struggles, but he loved fishing, and he did just that.”

Phillips said Chief William Saulis was a new boatman. He said he was waiting on the phone for the message, but so far knew nothing about what had happened.

Chief William Saulis Tuesday morning at 5:51 p.m. Delops Cove, N.S.

On Wednesday, December 16, 2020, a search team scoured the icy, rocky beach near Delaps Cove, NS (CBC)

Debris was seen from the air that morning, and two life rafts went ashore, but no one was aboard.

Jacob Jogart, a fisherman in NS, Yarmouth, told the CBC This is happening On Tuesday the crew will have survival suits and life jackets. He believes most men would have been asleep on their stocks when the boat got into trouble early Tuesday morning.

“If the guys were on their side, if a wave hit them and they rolled over, they wouldn’t really have time to put anything in. They wouldn’t even have time to go on deck,” he said.

“Even with drowning cases … no matter how cold the water is, there will be very slim chances of seeing anyone alive.”

Father of 12 missing persons

Leonard Gabriel’s 55-year-old girlfriend, Stella Marie McCauley, told CBC News she would miss her 12 children wearing her sweaters.

Gabriel described being a fisherman for more than 30 years, and he was kind and generous.

“He was always giving home treats next door to the kids,” she said.

He said he loves to cook and is always “joking around”.

Michael Drake’s older sister, Sandra Drake, said her family was devastated by the news. His brother has two-year-old children, and has moved to Nova Scotia and Fortune, N.L.

Michael Drake, Fortune, N.L., and Chief William Saulis was a member of the team that sent the emergency lighthouse on December 15, 2020, from the Delapses Temple in Fundy Bay. This photo was posted on Facebook by her cousin, Ashley Bitman. (Ashley Bitman / Facebook)

“He’s very good. He’s a good boy. He will help anyone,” he said, describing his brother as a very hard worker and a good worker who always supported his children.

Sandra Drake said their father was a fisherman and his brother started fishing as a boy.

“He loved the ocean … he lived in the water … he was always so busy, you can never catch him talking because he was always in the boats or the wharf working on the boats was down,” he said.

“Now he’s gone.”

‘I somehow put my head down and prayed’

Capt. Charles Roberts was a family friend and carried the nickname Hot Dog around the wharf, said Alija Richie, a fisherman from Yarmouth, NS.

I just spoke to Roberts a few days ago and when I heard that the boat was missing I said I didn’t want to believe it.

“But when I heard about it and I knew it was true, I kind of put my head down and prayed, hoping he was coming home.”

Alija Richie is a fisherman from Yarmouth who knows Captain Charles Roberts of Chief William Saulis. (CBC)

Richie said Roberts was a good man, an experienced fisherman.

“Whatever happens, it should have happened quickly.”

Richie was out fishing Wednesday morning. Although conditions are much better than they were on Tuesday, he said the dangerous nature of the job sits in the back of his mind.

“But like everyone else, you have to keep moving forward.”

One of Canada’s worst industries

The Nova Scotia fishing community has played its part in the tragedy, and this industry is one of the most dangerous in Canada.

Canada’s Transport Safety Board, 2018 is the worst year in more than a decade, with 17 people dying on fishing vessels – seven of them in Nova Scotia waters. Between 2011 and 2017, there were 63 fishing vessel deaths across the country.

Search and rescue teams have been searching the Delops Cove area for a day now. On Tuesday evening, the Maritime Joint Rescue Coordination Center announced that the body of one of the six crew members had been found. (Eric Wooliscraft / CBC)

In February 2013, five young Nova Scotian fishermen were killed when a wall crashed into Miss Allie during a storm, capsizing the boat and shaking small communities off Cape Chapel Island and Woods Harbor.

The bodies of team members Billy Jack Hotfield, Joel Hopkins, Caitlin Nickerson, Steven Cole Nickerson and Tyson Downsent have never been recovered.

The RJL scalp drag made headlines in 2010 when four of its crew members were killed in the Gulf of Fundy.

‘Trying to understand something very sad’

As the search unfolds, people living in communities along the Fundy Coast are eagerly awaiting.

Susan Robinson-Bernie Parks Temple resident. His family has two fishermen who help with the search.

“If you were not close to a fisherman on the boat, you would definitely know these people around Warwes and other communities. Everyone in the industry knows someone,” Robinson-Bernie told the CBC. Information morning.

“So they come together, talk to each other, trying to understand something very sad.”

He said many families of past and present fishermen show their compassion and support at the makeshift command center at United Baptist Church in Hillsburn on Wednesday.

“It’s getting closer to home, hearts are so heavy,” Robinson-Bernie said.

Chief William Saulis owns Yarmouth Sea Products Ltd., one of Scotia’s largest shellfish companies in southwest Nova. In addition to scallops, Yarmouth is a major buyer of seafood products lobster buyers.

A press release from the company on Wednesday said, “Safety equipment is all current and up to date with the required maintenance and inspection.”

Many of the team members are from the Yarmouth area.

“Fishing is not a job here, it’s a way of life,” city mayor Palm Mood told the CBC. Maritime noon.

We pray as the ships go out with our friends and our family members. This is the worst news you can get. As always. “

READ  Canada's new mandate appoints white men, despite efforts to increase diversity