Search for fishermen called off

The Coast Guard concluded its search at dusk Saturday for two fishermen presumed swept off the Ka‘u shoreline near Whittington Beach Park.

James Oyama, 62, and Jay Jara, 37, remain missing.

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“Pending any further developments, we’ve suspended the active search for these men,” said Cmdr. Benjamin Gates, deputy sector commander of Coast Guard Sector Honolulu. “Suspending a search without a positive resolution is never easy. Our condolences go out to the families and friends of James and Jay.”

Responders covered nearly 1,000 square nautical miles in their combined effort to find the two men, according to a Coast Guard statement.

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Hawaii County dispatch relayed information to the Coast Guard at 7 a.m. Thursday reporting the two fishermen overdue after receiving a report from a family member at 5:46 a.m. Oyama and Jara reportedly went fishing at 5 p.m. in street clothes Wednesday and were expected back before midnight.

Responders found the fishermen’s vehicles in the beach park and fishing gear on shore in the breaking surf zone.

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