Search efforts called off for 7 missing people in rural Alaska

Published: Oct. 28, 2020 at 6:56 PM AKDT|Updated: Nov. 4, 2020 at 9:04 AM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Search efforts have been called off for seven individuals who did not return after traveling by boat to Quinhagak last month.

Alaska State Troopers say despite search efforts, no sign of them was found.

A trooper dispatch states that Chad Chadwick Sr., Elizabeth Wassillie, Michael Sharp, Alexie Nose, Wilson Wassillie, Neal Gutleben and Bernice Waska are missing after a boating trip. They were supposed to return on Oct. 24.

Napakiak Search and Rescue said in a Facebook post that the group was headed on a seal hunt. Napakiak Search and Rescue also states that the group stopped in Eek to get gas before continuing their travels. They were last seen that day, Oct. 20.

The boat the group was in is described as a 22-foot welded aluminum boat with a Yahama outboard motor. It is reported that the group did not have hunting or survival gear.

On Oct. 22, searchers on boats looked for the missing group in a search from Quinhagak to Eek but no one was spotted and there was no sight of the boat. The next day, search efforts continued by four-wheeler as people drove the coast in Quinhagak after waves were too high on the river.

Alaska State Troopers, Napakiak Search and Rescue, Bethel Search and Rescue and the U.S. Coast Guard were all involved in the search efforts.

Moving forward, AST says all individuals have been entered into the missing person clearinghouse.

Troopers say the search efforts won’t resume until additional clues or new information surfaces.

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