Coast Guard crews search for missing boater near Port Canaveral

Coast Guard crews search for missing boater near Port Canaveral

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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35 ORLANDO) -

Coast Guard crew members are searching for a 59-year-old man who reported he was experiencing chest pain and a tingling sensation in his left arm early Wednesday morning.

Patrick Cornelias, of Delaware, contacted watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Jacksonville at approximately 8 a.m.

"He followed protocol," said Commanding Officer Charles Perry with the U.S. Coast Guard.  "Gave us some vitals, told us he was having chest pain with some numbness down the side, so we responded to the position given."

Cornelias told rescuers he was 37 miles northeast of Port Canaveral, but when they found his boat, no one was on board.  "It was surprising nobody was there," said Perry.  "Mr. Cornelias wasn't on board, so immediately we turned it to a search and rescue."

With the aid of a helicopter, airplane and Coast Guard cutter, investigators determined that the 42-foot sail boat was actually 6 to 7 miles away from where it was originally reported. 

"The sail boat was floating as normal.  The sails weren't up, meaning he was running on engine power, but there was nobody on board."

While his whereabouts remain a mystery, investigators believe he fell overboard. 

"Crews plan to search throughout the night and re-access in the morning," said Perry.

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