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Coast Guard calls off two-day search for missing paddleboarder

ST. PETERSBURG — The U.S. Coast Guard suspended a two-day search Monday night for a missing paddleboarder whose board washed up near the north entrance of the Manatee River.

Jeffrey Comer, 50, of Harbour Island in Tampa was last seen about 2 p.m. Saturday, loading his paddleboard onto his vehicle. His unmanned board, keys and wallet were found that night.

Authorities spent a combined 55 hours searching, covering an area roughly the size of Pinellas County. The search was called off at 9 p.m. Monday.

"It's always unfortunate when we have to suspend a search, because our main focus is to locate the individual and return him safely to his family," said Lt. Ben O'Loughlin, command duty officer at Sector St. Petersburg, in a statement. "Our thoughts and prayers remain with the family and friends of Mr. Comer."

Coast Guard calls off two-day search for missing paddleboarder 05/01/12 [Last modified: Thursday, May 3, 2012 8:10am]
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