January 17, 2020
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Search for boaters missing off MDI continues for 3rd day

The Coast Guard continues to search for three people who are believed to have been on a sailboat that went missing early Saturday morning off Mount Desert Island.

An emergency dispatcher received a 911 call around 3 a.m. Saturday from a woman who said “We’re on a boat” before the call cut off, Nicole Groll, spokeswoman for the Coast Guard’s 1st District based in Boston, said Monday. The source of the call was traced to a location 20 miles south of Mount Desert Island in the Gulf of Maine, she said.

The Coast Guard traced the call to a cellphone owned by Charlotte Kirby and, through subsequent investigation, learned that Kirby had gone sailing on a 40-foot vessel named Dove, leaving from the John Williams Boat Co. on Somes Sound on MDI. Two men, Nathaniel Davis and Wilfredo Lombardo, went with Kirby on the trip, according to the Coast Guard.

Groll said the boat is an Oceanis 40 manufactured by the French firm Beneteau. She did not know where the missing sailors live or what towns they are from.

The Coast Guard has been searching during daylight hours since receiving the call, but so far has found nothing. They have searched 2,700 square nautical miles for the boat and, on Monday morning, resumed searching with a plane based out of the agency’s air station on Cape Cod.

A woman who answered the phone Monday morning at the boatyard, but who declined to give her name, said that the Dove is owned by Nathaniel Davis. She said everyone at the boatyard is “very concerned” but declined further comment.


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