NORTH CAPE, P.E.I. - The president of P.E.I. Ground Search and Rescue marvels at the support residents of Tignish and area provided to his team and to the families of two missing fishermen while they searched for the fishermen.
“I would like to thank the people from that community for all the support while we were there, Gerald Arsenault said Monday afternoon. “People just wanted to help.”
At one point a searcher mentioned having wet feet. Soon after residents started dropping off dry socks. In response to all the donations of food being delivered to their command post, Arsenault said PEIGSAR sent out a post on social media indicating they had all the food they needed.
The support was much appreciated, he said.
There were also hundreds of local people out searching and showing their support any way they could.
“That is a very close-knit community,” Arsenault observed.
PEIGSAR had 42 volunteers involved in the search for Moe Getson and Glen DesRoches last Wednesday. Seven volunteers stayed all night helping to coordinate things for the next day. There were 37 volunteers involved last Thursday and close to 50 were involved in Sunday’s operations.
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On Monday, taking drift patterns and other factors into consideration, PEIGSAR moved their command post to Bloomfield and already had 25 volunteers ready to mobilize, and 15 more en route, when they were advised that the body of the second missing fisherman had been found in Campbellton, which is within the area searchers were planning to concentrate Monday’s efforts.
The ground search at North Cape had commenced Wednesday morning. It followed the capsizing and sinking of the fishing boat, Kyla Anne on Tuesday. A search by air and water went on throughout the night Tuesday.
The body of the captain of the Kyla Anne, Glen DesRoches, was found at North Cape Sunday morning. A Brockton resident, Lloyd Ellsworth, found the body of Moe Getson Monday morning, some 40 kilometers away from North Cape.
As matter of procedure, autopsies have been ordered on the bodies of both fishermen, Sgt. Darrell Gill with Prince District RCMP confirmed.
During the ground search, Arsenault said some team members walked 20 kilometers a day, covering beaches to within a 40-minute drive of North Cape along both coasts. “None of us joined with the understanding it was going to be easy,” he said. Taking the constant wave action into consideration, the high probability beaches were walked multiple times.
Prince District RCMP estended its thanks to the PEIGSAR members and the community volunteers who assisted in the recovery operations. "Our thoughts are with the family and friends of those lost," the force posted.