HFD suspends search for missing freediver off North Kohala

KAILUA-KONA — The Hawaii Fire Department suspended its search Friday evening for a freediver who went missing in the waters off North Kohala earlier this week.

West Hawaii Battalion Chief John Whitman said the decision was made after search and rescue teams were unsuccessful in their attempts to locate Guy Hermogila following surface searches north of Lapakahi State Historical Park, as well as other efforts that employed the use of watercraft and tank dives.

ADVERTISING


“We had no results today,” Whitman said.

The Coast Guard discontinued its search for Hermogila, 44, Thursday night following three days of looking. HFD typically suspends searches after three days as well, but decided to go out one more day on Friday.

Family reported Hermogila missing on Tuesday morning, telling authorities he was last seen around 11 p.m. Monday. The family had been camping at “Mosquito Bay,” which is located makai of Akoni Pule Highway near mile marker 8.

The Coast Guard told West Hawaii Today that Hermogila had reportedly made his way to Black Point, situated south of Malae Point, to dive for lobsters. He never returned.

The search, which extended from Red Hill in North Kohala to Kawaihae in South Kohala, produced Hermogila’s dive float, which was found in the ocean several yards offshore.

ADVERTISING


Search and rescue personnel also located various equipment belonging to Hermogila on the beach nearby, though HFD and the Coast Guard reported that some of his personal items were still missing.

Responders are asking anyone with information on Hermogila’s whereabouts or the events surrounding his disappearance to contact the Sector Honolulu Command Center at 842-2600.