Coast Guard ends search for two kayakers in Lake Erie - WNEM TV 5

Coast Guard ends search for two kayakers in Lake Erie

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The Coast Guard has ended its active search in western Lake Erie and the Black River for two missing kayakers after they did not return to their boat launch by their intended time.

Investigators said 27-year-old Nicole Launert and 30-year-old Mike Smith were supposed to return to their boat launch in Lorain, Ohio by Tuesday. 

At 10:35 p.m. Tuesday, the owner of Grumpy’s Bait and Tackle called the Coast Guard informing them of two kayakers who had departed at approximately 6:30 p.m. and were expected back by sunset. His rental kayaks had not been returned by the expected time. 

The search was ended Wednesday morning after a reporter found the two missing kayaks neatly stowed approximately 100 feet from the boat launch in the woods. The names of the missing people did not show up in any database search, officials said. 

One of the kayaks is dark blue, the other is yellow. Both were 10 feet long. Investigators believe they were placed by the trail sometime between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. 

The Coast Guard searched all night with an MH-65 helicopter and a 25-foot response boat. 

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