Hawaii County rescue crews Friday spent a third day searching without luck for a 15-year-old New York boy who was reportedly swept from the shoreline Wednesday afternoon in the vicinity of Kealakekua Bay.
Tyler Madoff, of White Plains, went missing about 3 p.m. when large waves swept him and another 15-year-old boy into the water near the Kaawaloa lighthouse, which is located in a remote area on the northern edge of Kealakekua Bay, according to the U.S. Coast Guard in Honolulu and the Hawaii Fire Department. The boys were part of a youth group visiting from New York taking part in a kayaking and hiking tour.
Despite spending all day Friday searching within and two miles outside the bay, no sign of the boy had been found as of press time, said Hawaii Fire Department West Hawaii Battalion Chief Reuben Chun. The fire department’s search effort was suspended late Friday afternoon and expected to resume at first light today, he said.
The U.S. Coast Guard in Honolulu, which provided an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter and the 87-foot Coast Guard Cutter Ahi to assist in the search, suspended search operations at sunset Thursday pending any new developments, U.S. Coast Guard District 14 Petty Officer 3rd Class Anthony Soto.
The search effort has covered a 185-square-mile-plus area extending 11 miles from shore, Soto said. Hawaii Fire Department personnel have spent day after day diving in the water as well as scanning the area from above using a county helicopter.
The only items found after Madoff went missing on Wednesday were two T-shirts and a blue rope, according to the fire department.
The second 15-year-old boy was picked up shortly after by passing boats. Though the fire department initially listed the injured boy as being 14 years old, the Hawaii Police Department has since identified him as being 15.
The injured boy was transported in critical condition to Kona Community Hospital and later taken to the Queen’s Medical Center on Oahu for further care, according to police. Queen’s Medical Center Corporate Communications Director Makana Shook was unable to provide an update on the boy’s condition as of press time Friday.