ENGLEWOOD — Todd Battaglino will remain lost at sea.
The Tampa-based U.S. Coast Guard announced Wednesday evening it was suspending searches for the 50-year-old Battaglino, who has been missing since Monday.
“Throughout our search efforts, we’ve been in contact with the Battaglino family and we know this is a very difficult time for them,” Coast Guard St. Petersburg commander Capt. Holly Najarian stated in a press release Tuesday.
“Suspending a search is the most difficult decision I have to make in my position and despite our best efforts we were unable find Mr. Battaglino,” Najarian said.
A Venice resident and avid boater, Battaglino was last seen Monday afternoon prior to leaving Englewood’s Royal Palm Marina in his 18-foot fishing boat. His family reported him missing Tuesday when they hadn’t heard from him and he failed to return to the marina.
The Coast Guard was assisted by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Venice Police Department, Sarasota and Charlotte marine patrols.
Crews searched a 200-square-mile area extending into the Gulf 20 miles west of Stump Pass Beach State Park.
Coast Guard crews spotted Battaglino’s boat unmanned and adrift in the Gulf Tuesday.