U.S. Coast Guard suspends search for Kimberly family

Kimberly family
Kimberly family US Coastguard

The U.S. Coast Guard suspended its active search for the remaining members of the Kimberly family, missing at sea since last Sunday, around 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Coast Guard Capt. Gregory Case announced.

“It’s the most difficult decision I ever had to make in this position,” Case said from the Coast Guard base in St. Petersburg.

He based the decision, he said, on several factors including area covered in the search; the resources available; the time since disappearance; and the weather.

Case confirmed that the two bodies found this week belonged to 17-year-old Rebecca Kimberly and her father, Ace Kimberly. The daughter wore a life jacket, the father did not, said Case.

Also on the boat were Donny Kimberly, 15, and Roger Kimberly, 13. The family of four, which lived on the boat, set sail for Fort Myers out of Sarasota Sunday to take the boat in for repairs. Ace Kimberly told his brother by telephone that they were caught in rough seas and storms during the trip. Nothing else would be heard from the boat. The multi-agency search party found boat debris, including two kayaks, during the week.

David J. Neal: 305-376-3559, @DavidJNeal