Teams search for fisherman in Lubec

Posted April 05, 2009, at 9:40 p.m.

LUBEC, Maine — Volunteer search and rescue teams from the Bangor area scoured the beaches and islands Sunday searching for a missing Roque Bluffs fisherman.

Logan Preston, 19, was one of two people aboard the fishing vessel All American, which went down Wednesday, March 25, near Red Island. His partner, Loren Lank, 53, of Lubec, was found the same day.

About a dozen people from Down East Emergency Medicine Institute and Dirigo Search and Rescue searched the rugged shores of North Lubec, while Julie Jones of V K9 Scent Specific Search and Recovery, along with her cadaver dog Quincy, searched the islands in Johnson’s Bay.

Standing at the marina before the start of the search Sunday morning, Marine Patrol Officer Russell Wright briefed the teams.

“Whatever happened to that boat, it happened quick and it totally destroyed it,” Wright said. “We found pieces of bulkhead stringers that should have been 10 to 12 feet long; they were in short sections.”

Wright said it first was believed that the boat blew up, but that theory later was rejected. “We found no burn marks on anything we’ve found,” he said.

The teams then split up, and the search began around 11 a.m. Jones and Quincy boarded Wright’s boat and the ground teams headed to Seward’s Neck on North Lubec Road.

One team found the side of the wheelhouse with the window broken. They also found an orange glove, but it was not known whether it belonged to the crew of the All American.

During the more than two-hour search the teams remained in two-way radio contact, comparing notes on what they’d found.

DEEMI searcher John Murray of Orono radioed the other ground team that they no longer were finding debris, and they were ordered to turn around.

Because of fog, rain and wind a search and rescue plane did not accompany the teams Sunday. A plane is expected to be in Lubec when the weather clears later in the week.

Wright said Jones and the dog had searched Razor, Red, Cooper and Treats islands, and farther up the bay. The officer said the dog hit a scent on Cooper Island, but a search of the small island did not turn up the missing fisherman.

Wright said area fishermen plan to continue the search later this week.

“[When] the weather breaks they are going to drag some grapples up there to see if they can hook something,” he said. He said they planned to concentrate their search in the area of Red Island.

The missing boat last was seen around 3 p.m. Wednesday, March 25, dragging for sea urchins between Leighton Point in Pembroke and Red Island. Loren Lank apparently was piloting the 34-foot blue and white fiberglass boat owned by Roger Preston of Roque Bluffs, the father of Logan Preston.

U.S. Coast Guard, Maine Marine Patrol and the Maine State Police Dive Team searchers went over the area from Reversing Falls in Pembroke to Comstock Point in North Lubec, a distance of about one mile, searching for Logan Preston. They collected lots of debris, but little else.

Preston family members meanwhile searched the shore. They did so again Sunday.

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