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Fisherman missing

By Elizabeth Williams

Fisherman 48-year-old Stephen Duke Junior of Kings Bay Road Delaford is still missing. Duke left on a fishing expedition last Saturday around 11am and has not been seen since. His sister Kandia Duke McKenna, visited Tobago News worried about the safety of her brother.

"The services that suppose to render the help you, I am not seeing them coming forward. Communication is not forthcoming. Nobody has visited us, police, coast guard and the information and anything in regarding the search is slow in coming," McKenna said.

She said her brother would usually fish alone and would usually return within hours, and at the time when he left the Kings Bay Beach Facility, his cellular phone was not operational. The coast guard however, did inform her, that they searched the seas but came up empty handed.

"I am taking their word that they did search, but the fishermen from the various fishing villages, they went out and they searched, and they have not seen any sight of him," she said.

We contacted Public Relations Officer of the Coast Guard Lieutenant Kirk Jean Baptiste. Baptiste said Coast Guard Officials are aware of the missing fisherman and searches have been conducted along with the air guard. Baptisite added coast guard officials are also in search of Curtis Sydney who has been missing at sea since February 7th around 4:48pm.

"Sydney went fishing at Macqueripe Bay on February 7th along with Junior Charles when a swell approached on the rocks and swept his possessions including his wallet into the ocean. Sydney dived after his wallet but got into difficulty, his friend Junior Charles tried to assist but could not save him. Charles later swam to safety. Coast guard officials were later contacted," Baptiste said.

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Anonymous said on Saturday, Mar 3 at 9:17 AM

could it be a real murder ?,another paradise lost

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Bago Abroad said on Saturday, Feb 25 at 11:58 PM

I hope that he is found by now.

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fishermans friend said on Thursday, Feb 23 at 8:09 AM

@manman....i agree with you, that having certain safety equipment in every fishermans boat would be a good thing. but that stuff is expensive. radio,gps,flares,lifejackets....most fisherman are struggle already catching and selling some fish. some making hardly enough money to mantain there boats and engines. getting a second engine for safety is not an option for some of them, because of finance or the size of their boat only allow the use of one engine. the question is once more....why the THA-fishery department dont provide the fisherfolks with the necessary safety equipment ?? fisherman got their boats and engine stolen for years, there are no jettys or landingsites for them to secure their catch or boats. my prayers going to him and his family.

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manman said on Monday, Feb 20 at 6:24 PM

Our men should make it a practice to use safety ewuipment out at sea. This includes cell phones and radio, life jackets and fire flares. They should also carry truck tubes, spare engines and group floations to keep the crew together, but the life jacket should always be on in the event of an unforseen emergency.

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RJ said on Sunday, Feb 19 at 5:08 PM

I am hoping that he is okay. I will keep praying that the coast guard finds him.

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the virginian said on Sunday, Feb 19 at 11:35 AM

Terribly sorry to learn of this fisherman's fate.I,too,hope and pray he's well and unharmed and would,accordingly,be reunited with his family shortly. Sometimes a govt needs a reminder that its first priority is the safety and security of its citizenry.

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Sorry Song said on Sunday, Feb 19 at 9:52 AM

As usual too little to late. Here is an industry regulated by the Coast Guard, who want to see boat name and numbers painted. There is no investment or safety standards that are enforced. We see the type of vessels used for fishing, and these brave fishermen go out with not much more then their grandfathers did except they have engines. There are no transponders, radios, life jackets, but only hope and prayers carried by these mariners to return safely. Why do we not have a coast guard base on the island acquired by THA "Goat Island" where there should be one in order to cover north and south shores of Tobago. This was just another land grab that remains dormant. Pippy Lally is a warrior and I just hope he is drinking a coconut water on the beach somewhere until he is found. Tobago talks, but with a slack mouth and meaningless words. We do pray for your return.

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STINGRAY USA said on Friday, Feb 17 at 7:32 PM

Honestly I don't think our service men and women including our government are doing enough to protect the citizens of our country my prayers are with u pee pee larly .

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