Coast Guard names three men lost at sea

Hobo Seafood docks (Photo courtesy of Dennis Van Berwyn)

SWAN QUARTER, Hyde County - The three men who went missing last week with their boat capsized about a mile off the Georgia coast have been identified by the North Carolina Fisheries Association, after the US Coast Guard called off the active search for the men on Friday evening.

The captain, Gary McGowen and his stepson, Benjamin (BJ) Dover were both from Swan Quarter. The third crew member, Isaac West, was a Georgia man.

The Coast Guard had begun its search for the men on Tuesday when an emergency beacon was signaled to indicated the Hobo Seafood-owned fishing vessel, Miss Debbie, was in distress. The Coast Guard found the boat capsized a little more than a mile off the coast of Tybee Island, Georgia, but no sign of any of the three crew members was ever found.

Rough weather made the initial search difficult, but the Coast Guard searched by air and sent divers to search the capsized vessel. The Coast Guard could resume the search if any additional information becomes available that would help locate any of the three men.

The Miss Debbie is owned by Hobo Seafood, a small local commercial fishing operation run by Lee Bland and Madge Williams of Swan Quarter.