Missing fisherman's girlfriend: "he loved everyone and they love - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Missing fisherman's girlfriend: "he loved everyone and they loved him back"

A photo of the Addis Sylvester. (Source: U.S. Coast Guard) A photo of the Addis Sylvester. (Source: U.S. Coast Guard)

Murrells Inlet, SC (WMBF) - The Coast Guard Sector in Charleston searched for a man who fell overboard a fishing vessel Friday night near Myrtle Beach.

The man was identified as 42-year-old Howard "Dale" Smith. Smith reportedly fell overboard shortly before 9:30 p.m. 21 miles east of Myrtle Beach Friday night. 

Authorities say the fishing vessel is named "Addis Sylvester".

Search crews completed 20 searching spanning approximately 3,052 square miles before suspending the search. “The decision to suspend the search for Dale was not an easy one, and it was made understanding his experience as a fisherman and his will to live," said Capt. John Reed, Commander, Coast Guard Sector Charleston.

The incident is still currently under investigation.

Dale's girlfriend, Cyndi, spoke with WMBF News and said,

"While I had him for a many years it wasn't nearly long enough. We had so many plans and hopes for our future together. Now, it's so so hard to breathe from one second to the next without him. While I'm currently in Florida with his mom, because we came here together for the holidays.I stayed behind to help his disabled mom with things in her life. He went  home before me for work. Now this. 
His last words to his mom were that he loved her and tell Cyndi I love her. As we met with the Coast Guard yesterday that came to us in Jacksonville, and I'm sure with one of the most difficult jobs ever.

They told us at 5pm Saturday January 6th that they  were officially calling off the search and rescue making the presumptious call of death and officially Dale became" Lost at Sea."  Now it is a search, in hopes of recovery of his body. There aren't words to describe an emotion that you've never had before, while I've had loss of loved ones in my life time, I never in any imaginings thought it would be my spouse, my love, my life. Lost at Sea doesn't give any one that loves Dale closure. 

What caused an experienced Commerical fisherman of 20+ years to go overboard is a question that will forever be on the forefront our minds.

About Dale he loved everyone and they loved him back. He loved Me, his Mom and his family more than the air he breathed. Our grandchildren worshipped him, For them, he hung the moon. For his Mom he was hope and love for the future. He is loved from as far as California to here.

Hannah, I hope that you can get something this. It's his story, it's our story."

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