Police: California man apparently fell off cruise ship headed for Hilo

Police have launched a missing person investigation after a 59-year-old man fell overboard while on a cruise ship headed for Hilo early this morning.

The missing man, identified as Kenneth Schwalbe of California, is described as 5-feet 5-inches tall, 140 pounds with brown hair.


Police received a report at 8:40 a.m. this morning that Schwalbe was last seen at 8:30 p.m. Thursday.

Schwalbe could not be located during a search of the vessel, prompting the ship’s security personnel to notify local authorities.

The U.S. Coast Guard was notified, and a maritime search was initiated. Hawaii Police Department detectives responded to the scene at Hilo Harbor.

Officers reviewed video surveillance footage taken at 4:18 a.m. this morning from a camera positioned on the exterior of the ninth deck of the ship. The footage depicted a person believed to be Schwalbe falling from the ship.

Based on the time of the video footage combined with the ship’s coordinates, it was determined by the ship’s captain the vessel was approximately eight miles offshore Hilo when the incident occurred.

Detectives are continuing to investigate. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact the police department’s nonemergency line at (808) 935-3311.

No photo of the missing man was immediately available, according to police.

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