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1 drowns, 1 still missing at Forbidden Island

AT 3:25 p.m. on Sunday, a search was ongoing for a missing swimmer in the waters off Forbidden Island, according to Department of Fire and Emergency Medical Services public information officer Derek Gersonde.

The body of another swimmer was found by the boating safety unit at 1:32 p.m., Saturday, near the Laolao Club House cliff line.

Gersonde stated that on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018, at 12:28 noon, DFEMS received a call from the Department of Public Safety-911 dispatch regarding two missing swimmers at Forbidden Island in Kagman.

DFEMS-Search and Rescue conducted a cliffline search while DPS-Boating Safety conducted a sea search with assistance from the U.S. Coast Guard and the Navy.

DPS-Boating Safety located the first victim, a 30-year-old Korean woman. The victim’s body was brought to shore and transported to the Commonwealth Health Center where she was pronounced dead at 2:40 p.m. by Dr. Nicholas R. Villalon.

The missing swimmer is believed to be the victim’s 32-year-old husband, Gersonde said, adding that the couple’s IDs were found in their rental car.

In a separate press statement, DPS spokeswoman Jacqueline Shepard said a female witness reported the drowning incident.

According to the caller, two individuals went under water for about five minutes and did not surface.

Shepard said DPS-Boating Safety officers responded to the scene and launched the Impact and a jet-boat. The U.S. Coast Guard launched its helicopter from Guam and joined the search at 3:37 p.m.

Shepard said at 1:32 p.m., Boating Safety located the female victim’s body near the Laolao Club House cliffline.

She said Boating Safety continued to search for the male victim until 6:21 p.m. Police resumed their search Sunday morning with the help of the Coast Guard, Fish & Wildlife and DFEMS.

Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/101490-1-drowns-1-still-missing-at-forbidden-island

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