Search Suspended for Two Boaters Missing on Rappahannock

The Coast Guard has made the difficult decision to suspend its search for two men, missing from their Boston Whaler near Mosquito Point on the Rappahannock River.

The Coast Guard says 59-year-old Mark Ringenberg and 59-year-old Stephen Perkins left Weems, Virginia Sunday morning on the 15-foot Whaler.

On Sunday evening, the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC) reported the boat was found washed ashore with its keys still in the ignition, shoes on the deck, and cold drinks in a cooler.

The Coast Guard sent two helicopter search crews, two cutters, and another search boat, joining teams from Virginia Marine Resources Commission, Lancaster County, Middlesex County and Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

In all, USCG searched for 63 hours covering approximately 774 square miles before calling off the mission.

“Suspending a search is never an easy decision to make and weighs heavy on everyone’s heart,” said Capt. Kevin Carroll, Sector Hampton Roads commander. “ There’s no way to express how sorry we are that we were unable to return Stephen and Mark home to their loved ones.”

-Meg Walburn Viviano