A woman went overboard from the Norwegian Epic cruise ship in the Mediterranean Sea over the weekend, and in a grim development, officials called off the search for her on Sunday.
The ship was crossing the Mediterranean Sea while traveling from Cannes, France, to Palma de Mallorca, Spain, but turned around and docked in the middle of the ocean to launch a search party where the passenger, identified as a 63-year-old Korean woman, was last seen.
The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended its search for Thomas McElhany, 26, who went overboard about 35 miles south of Islamorada.
The Coast Guard said crews searched for 32 hours and covered 2,086 square miles.
Cmdr. David Aldous, Coast Guard 7th District search and rescue mission coordinator said “I have been in contact with members of Mr. McElhany’s family throughout our search efforts and know this is a very difficult and painful time for them.”
“Suspending a search is one of the most difficult decisions we have to make as first responders, and it is never made lightly.”