Boat tragedy stymies FBI

Boat Tragedy Stymies FBI

No answers to Mississauga trio’s fate

by Joe Warmington, The Toronto Sun, Feb. 24, 1995

Copyright 1994 and 1995, The Toronto Sun, a division of Sun Media Corporation

 

An FBI investigation into the mysterious disappearance of three Mississauga men on a Florida boating trip has been called off with no answers about their fate.

“The case is closed,” FBI special agent Bob Ulmer said yesterday from his Tampa, Fla. office.  “It never rose to the status of a full investigation since there was no evidence of criminal intent or criminal activity.”

David Madott, Kent Munro and Omar Shearer, all 25, have been missing since Nov. 3 last year, when the boat they were in sunk about 100 km off the coast of Marco Island.

The boat’s owner, Jeff Wandich, 27, also of Mississauga, survived by swimming 8 km to a communications tower.  He was rescued 36 hours later by the U.S. Coast Guard.

But an extensive seven-day search turned up no sign of the other three.

The three missing men, who were all wearing bright-colored flotation devices and wet suits, had been visiting Wandich for a weekend of diving and fishing.

Bill Madott, father of David, called the FBI’s decision “disappointing” since it leaves the families frustrated in their quest to find out what happened to their sons.

“There is a mystery and they haven’t solved where these guys are,” said Madott.  “The question still remains: Where are they?”

A reward for the discovery of the bodies, to allow families to have a proper burial for them, is still offered.

Still mourning the loss of his friends, Wandich said he’s pleased with the FBI’s conclusion because it let’s people know that he wasn’t involved in their disappearance.

“It feels good to have an institution like that behind you,” he said, adding he was getting tired of people insinuating that things didn’t happen as he described.

But as Ulmer said yesterday: “It was just a tragic accident.”

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