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Search for crew of capsized boat suspended; crew members presumed dead

The "Miss Debbie." (U.S. Coast Guard)

TYBEE ISLAND, Ga. (WTGS) - The Coast Guard has discontinued the search for three crew members of the “Miss Debbie” off the coast of Tybee Island.

The agency released the identities of the missing men on Thursday.

They have been identified as Gary McGowen, Benjamin Dover and Isaac West.

The three men were from the region near the vessel’s home port of Nag’s Head, North Carolina, according to Coast Guard spokesman J.B. Zorn.

The “Miss Debbie” capsized and is in about 15 feet of water, about a mile northeast of Tybee Island.

Thursday, crews were attempting to anchor the vessel where it capsized to prevent it from drifting or leaking fuel.

The National Weather Service confirmed a tornado caused the boat to capsize. The tornado hit the vessel as it moved north from Fort Pulaski.

The Department of Natural Resources is now doing recovery operations.

McGowen, Dover and West are presumed dead.

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