One man drowns; another is rescued
U.S. Coast Guard crews rescued one boater from a Matagorda Bay oil rig and recovered the body of a companion in the Gulf of Mexico about 24 miles northeast of Port Aransas on Saturday, March 24.
A Coast Guard spokesman said the wife of one of the boaters called about 11:30 p.m. on Friday, March 23, because the two were overdue from their fishing trip. The Coast Guard launched a helicopter and jet and two response boats, including one from Coast Guard Station Port Aransas, to search for the pair. The cutter Steelhead was also diverted to help in the effort, the spokesman said.
At about 2:30 a.m. Saturday, the oil rig in Matagorda Bay contacted the Coast Guard in Corpus Christi to report one of the boaters had swum to the rig, while the other had stayed with their boat.
At 8:45 a.m., another boater found the second missing person floating in the Gulf of Mexico. A Coast Guard helicopter brought the man to a Corpus Christi hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
The Associated Press identified the survivor as Ken Henderson, a retired Montgomery Sheriff ’s Department deputy from Conroe, and the dead man as Ed Coen, also from the Houston area.