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Radio Transmissions Reveal Boat Crash Search Was Personal

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maggieheadshot Maggie Newland
Maggie Newland is a reporter at CBS4. She arrived at the station ...
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Radio transmissions from a deadly boat crash on the Fourth of July show rescuers knew they were looking for a family member of one of their own.

“One of the guys missing is one of our guy’s sons,” is heard over the radio.

Andrew Garcia, who officials said was operating one of the boats involved in a three boat crash, was the son of retired Miami-Dade Fireboat Captain Jack Garcia.   That fact was noted on incident reports and mentioned numerous times over the radio, sometimes bringing out emotion in searchers and those coordinating the search.

“Is this a recovery or a rescue mode still?” is asked.  “This is Jack Garcia’s son we’re looking for… I know, I know it sucks so bad,” is the response.

Radio Transmissions also show Captain Garcia was assisting in the search.  Notes show he had a tracker on the boat and could advise on the point of impact.

“This is from the boat that got in the accident and he thinks that might be when the accident happened because he’s got a tracker on it,” the transmission revealed.

Jack Garcia has been critical of the search efforts, in part, because Miami-Dade’s fireboats are not operational and could not assist in the search.  Both Andrew Garcia’s body and that of Victoria Dempsey were not found until the morning after the crash.

Captain Garcia was out searching for his son and Dempsey.  It’s noted in the incident reports that the “female victim was located partially floating face down” and “..a civilian vessel on scene recovered the body.”   But even after her body was found, Andrew Garcia was still missing.

At  9:50 a.m., the morning after the crash, it was noted the City of Miami Fireboat and dive teams were responding and there was a request for someone from Miami-Dade Fire Department to call their fireboat.

Six minutes later, another note:  “No more assets to be dispatched per {Miami-Dade Fire Chief Dave} Downey without his approval.”

At 11:40 on the morning of July 5th, Andrew Garcia, the fourth victim of the deadly boat crash was located.

Click here to watch the report. 

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