Responders rescue one, search for second after boat capsizes in Bay (UPDATE)

Published: Monday, October 29, 2012 at 10:09 AM.

3:45 UPDATE: provided courtesy the Northwest Florida Daily News from reporters Angel McCurdy and Lauren Sage Reinlie. 

Officials are continuing to look for the missing Mary Esther man who fell out of his boat after it overturned early Monday.

Robert Gregory, 41, and his 18-year-old nephew, Tyler Carpenter from Fort Walton Beach, went out around 12:45 a.m. to gig for flounder in the Choctawhatchee Bay area.

The exact time is not known, but at some point their 14-foot aluminum boat began to take on water and then roll, according to Stan Kirkland, spokesman with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

While in the water, the two men could only locate one life jacket. Kirkland said Carpenter was given the life jacket, which enabled him to swim closer to shore.

Carpenter was spotted around 7 a.m. yelling for help near the pilings by a motorist going over the Clyde B. Wells Bridge. He was taken to Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast and later released.

First responders have been in the water and flying over the area since early Monday in an effort to locate the missing man.

The boat was found partially submerged on the northeast side of the bridge and had drifted some distance from where it actually rolled over, Kirkland said. He said investigators found nothing significant in the boat.


The Freeport Fire Department, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Walton County Sheriff’s Office remain at the scene.

1:25 p.m. UPDATE

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