A boater has been reported missing in Lake Erie in Monroe County according to Sheriff Dale Malone.
On Wednesday night around 8:45, Monroe County Central Dispatch received a 911 call from a female reporting her 8-year-old son and boyfriend were in the water by Estral Beach and had become separated from their unanchored boat. A nearby boater assisted in pulling the boy from the water, but the man could not be located.
Preliminary investigation revealed that a 28-year-old female, a 36-year-old male, and two boys ages 8 and 3, all from Waterford, MI, were abroad on their boat in Lake Erie near the mouth of Swan Creek.
The 8-year-old boy, while wearing a life jacket, jumped into the water but became separated due to the drifting boat. The man jumped into the water, without a life jacket, to assist him. They both were unable to swim back to the boat and the man began to have trouble swimming.
A boat nearby saw the developing situation and responded to assist. Once closer, the second boater was able to pull the boy from the lake. However, the man could not be located.
Members of the Monroe County Marine Division and Uniformed Services Division were dispatched to the area.
The Monroe County Dive Team, Monroe County Aviation Unit, U.S. Coast Guard, Wayne County Underwater Search and Recovery Team, along with fire departments from Berlin Township, Frenchtown Township, and Estral Beach conducted search operations for approximately four hours, but were unable to locate the missing boater.
Search operations will continue Thursday. A representative from the USCG 9th District Public Affairs office says local divers will go in the water some time in the afternoon to recover the man’s body.