47-year old comic book artist Norman Lee of Weymouth, Massachusetts went missing off the Cayman Islands while snorkeling with his wife last week. The Associated Press reported that Lee’s wife returned to the shore when they were separated 230 meters off Grand Cayman. Search and rescue operations consisting of boats, divers and a helicopter weren’t able to find the missing artist.
Police said Saturday evening that authorities in the British Caribbean territory have halted the search.
Currents have been strong and it was “unlikely that we will make any recovery at this stage,” said Chief Inspector Brad Ebanks.
Rick Connolly with the Royal Cayman Islands Police echoed Ebanks, saying, “There is a current out there which is taking us quite a way out to sea.”
Joe Avery, a local reporter for Grand Cayman 27, says Lee was last seen in the channel markers, which serve as the border between the inner waters and the outer waters. “The inner waters are quite calm because the reef adds protection.”
“It isn’t uncommon for snorkelers to encounter trouble in the water.”
According to the family, Lee’s wife thought her husband had already returned to the shore.
Lee had been involved with Marvel and DC Comics for comic books such as Avengers, X-Men and Supergirl.