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#479518 - 12/11/13 10:00 AM 5 Men Went Fishing; 1 Turned Up Dead; 4 Missing
Marty Offline
Police and Coast Guard teams continue to search tonight for 4 fishermen who went missing while on Belize's southern waters on a fishing expedition.

For the families, it is like living in a state of suspended terror: at any moment, they are expecting bad news, possibly grave news. That's because a fifth member of their party turned up dead yesterday; and he met a violent end.

Today, 7News tried to track down the families of the men, who we found in a state of sustained, unknowing fear. Daniel Ortiz has the story:

Daniel Ortiz reporting
Today, the family members of the 5 fishermen who went missing at sea couldn't put words together to describe the terror they're going through.

24 year-old Elgin "Ricey" Graham, 49 year-old Thomas Young, 26 year-old Derwin Gentle, 26 year-old Kenrick Chi, and 34 year-old Sergio Flores left for a fishing trip to Southern Long Caye since last week Thursday.

The body of one of the men, Thomas Young, was found. The medical examiner determined that he was murdered, chopped and then shot to death.

Celina Gentle - Mother of Derwin
"We never got any communication from them and so we started to worry. We started to call their phones because they went for a couple of days now, but they don't usually go for that long."

The sigh is Mrs. Gentle hoping for the best but expecting the worse. She joins the family of the other 3 men still missing.

Celina Gentle - Mother of Derwin
"Every time he would go, he would let us know where he is. He would call and say where he is or whatever. He never would go without informing us. This is the first time and we are taking it really hard right now."

Voice of: Common Law Wife of Elgin Graham
"Friday we see that they didn't come in and so we gave them till Saturday. Saturday morning they called about 5am and they say that they will come in. The boss went to wait for them Saturday evening, but they didn't come. They (the boss) got concern and started to call their phones. Their phones only rang. Sunday they called again but the phones only rang. They came to me on Sunday and ask if my husband has reached, I told them no, he hasn't reached home yet."

"Monday, we see that they didn't come, we got concerned because when they would go to sea down south, they would only take one overnight."

Celina Gentle - Mother of Derwin
"We went to report them missing at the police station yesterday and by the time we left the station the police called us back and told us they found a body and so we went to identify the body and it was one of them."

That was possibly the worse news yet they could have received confirmation of one of their dead loved ones. All 5 men went fishing on Thursday, and they were expected back over the weekend. Yesterday made 3 days Young's body was found floating in the water.

Lt. Gregory Soberanis - Operation's Officer, Belize Coast Guard
"We received a call from the Belize Port Authority that they had a patrol in the area of Colson Caye and they were requesting Coast Guard assistance at that location. We immediately deployed our quick reaction team from the headquarters and when they arrived at that location they found out from the Port Authority Patrol that a body had been discovered floating approximately 1 mile east of Colson Caye."

"The police was informed of the situation. We were instructed to bring the body to mainland which we did and it was handed over to the police department."

What makes the situation even more difficult for the families is that they have no idea what happened on the fishing trip which caused Thomas Young to turn up dead.

Lt. Gregory Soberanis - Operation's Officer, Belize Coast Guard
"Of late, we have been receiving reports that the Alligator Caye area, all the way down south to the cayes in front of Dangriga has become hostile again. This area is an area that as the Coast Guard we know needs to patrol frequently due to the piracy that occurs at those particular locations."

Celina Gentle - Mother of Derwin
"My son goes to work every day and he doesn't troubles anyone. That's why it is hard for me. I don't see why they would rob him because he doesn't have anything, when he goes to sea he doesn't take anything to be robbed, except for the lobster that they would want to take away."

Whatever the case is, these family members all want their loved ones returned to them.

Celina Gentle - Mother of Derwin
"All I am hoping that whatever they did with him out there, I would just want to get his body and put him to rest. If they killed him or have him hold, let us know or something. Or if he is hurt out there or if anybody sees him on the sea or anything, they can contact us and just let us find him."

Lt. Gregory Soberanis - Operation's Officer, Belize Coast Guard
"We are currently conducting a joint investigation with the police. We have our people as well as the police personnel out at sea conducting an investigation. We will definitely make every endeavor to try and locate these 4 missing individuals."

Their fishing vessel, Natasha, has also not been located. Police and Coast Guard have searched extensively since yesterday evening and most of today. None of the other 4 men have been located as of news time. Still, that didn't stop the rumours running rampant all through the day that the authorities discovered other bodies, putting more pressure on the families, which kept expecting more bad news - even as they hope for the best.

Graham is the father of 5 children. Young was the father of 7 children, and Gentle has one daughter.

Channel 7


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#479603 - 12/12/13 10:00 AM Re: 5 Men Went Fishing; 1 Turned Up Dead; 4 Missing [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Search For Missing Men Turns Up Nothing, Still

Tonight, the families of the four missing fishermen continue to worry about their whereabouts because it’s been 6 days since they went out on their fishing trip, and they have not returned home. As we’ve told you, the dread is mounting, and they are expecting the worst because one of 5 turned up dead on Monday. He died from multiple gunshot and chop wounds.

As we’ve told you, 24 year-old Elgin “Ricey” Graham, 49 year-old Thomas Young, 26 year-old Derwin Gentle, 26 year-old Kenrick Chi, and 34 year-old Sergio Flores left for a fishing trip to Southern Long Caye since last week Thursday. Their families contacted them when they arrived at their fishing camp, and they were expected back home over the weekend. They didn’t show up, and then Belize Port Authority found Young’s body floating in the sea near to where the party went fishing.

Yesterday the Coast Guard searched this entire area, and today, they searched close to the Belize district, but they’ve not been able to find any of the 4 missing men or their vessel, Natasha. The weather was particularly difficult for the search team, but nevertheless, they conducted thorough sweeps, to no avail. They will resume their search early tomorrow morning. We’ll keep following the story.

Channel 7


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