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Coast Guard suspends search for missing boater

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CHATHAM CO., GA (WTOC) -

The Coast Guard has suspended their search for a Pin Point man who went missing Sunday afternoon after his boat capsized in the Vernon River near Rose Dhu Rd.

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources is still conducting a recovery effort using sonar.

Investigators said Walter Johnson Jr. and Samuel Godfrey, both cousins, were fishing when it happened. Johnson was rescued by a passerby.

According to family members, they've been fishing together for years.

"They're always out there getting fish, crabbing, oysters. They were just fishing the day," said Godfrey's niece, Renee Oswell.

Johnson said they stopped the boat, got their fishing rods ready, and lowered the anchor. It's their routine, but on Sunday, something went wrong.

"He said some water started coming into the boat," explained Oswell. "It flipped over."

Johnson was able to hold on to the boat but Godfrey fell out.

"He's taking it pretty hard right now. We're trying to be here for him," said Oswell.

DNR, Metro police, Savannah Fire and the Coast Guard were all called out to assist.

The DNR is still searching for Godfrey, however, the search has now turned into a search and recovery effort.

"We're all trying to be strong for one another and comfort one another," said Oswell.

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