By SAMANTHA BOYD
It was a hopeful sight on Sunday, Feb. 19, as family, friends and other community members gathered together in support of the search for missing boater Tyler Doyle.
Last seen on Jan. 26, after dropping his friend off at the north jetty, Doyle went out to put out some duck decoys. The two stayed in contact over the phone. When Doyle went around the south jetty his friend lost sight of him. Shortly after, Doyle said he began having mechanical issues and the boat began taking on water, according to the SCDNR.
Officials are continuing to thoroughly investigate the disappearance, calling it a hunting/boating accident suspecting no foul play. The SCDNR also said the search would continue as long as the weather holds up. Another update from officials is expected by Tuesday.
The family shared a statement to the crowd that gathered at the T. Craig Campbell Boat Landing in Little River. Saying “We’re grateful to everyone who has volunteered their time, their boats and assisted in this extensive search for Tyler,” adding “Your outpouring of love, support, prayers and uplifting thoughts mean so much to this family, Thank you.”
Pastor Jimmy Floyd from Dogwood Hill Baptist Church shared prayers and memories saying, “ Tyler Doyle, what can I say? He brought light into a room when he stepped in and he’d certainly come over and hug ya neck,” Floyd, looking at the family holding and hugging each other, carried on saying “I haven’t seen any evidence of death, I’m still looking for life, amen.” And the crowd agreed responding with an “Amen”.
Joining the search as of Sunday, the Civil Air Patrol will be moving forward in the search for Doyle.
A number of other agencies, volunteers and family members are also continuing to search down the coast. Wisconsin Wings of Hope members came all the way in support and offered for donations to be made at their website, WingsofHopeWI.com, to help fund the search efforts.
The event ended on a short message from a member of Grand Strand outdoors followed by a somber but hopeful group duck call on the dock at sunset.