The U.S. Coast Guard is searching overnight for two brothers and a woman friend who left Mayport Sunday morning in a 20-foot boat and did not return by the end of the day.
Authorities said John J. Navaraz, 32, Elijs Navaraz, 31, and Rebecca Sullivan, 28, did not return as scheduled on Sunday night.
The truck that the group used to launch their 20-foot pleasure craft named Problem Child remained at the boat ramp in Mayport.
The group left Mayport about 8 a.m. and were scheduled to return in the late afternoon, the Coast Guard said. The crew is believed to have survival equipment on board, including lifejackets and flares.
When there was no response from periodic radio calls overnight, the crew of the 87-foot Coast Guard Cutter Kingfisher, homeported at Mayport, began searching Monday morning.
The Coast Guard has also launched a 47-foot rescue boat and crew members from Mayport, along with the crew of the 270-foot Coast Guard Cutter Bear homeported at Portsmouth, Va.; an HH-65 Dolphin rescue helicopter aircrew from Air Station Savannah, Ga.; and a C-130 aircrew from Air Station Clearwater.
"Each case is different," Petty Officer Michael Hulme said. "We're hopeful that we can find any sign or indication that they lost power and drifted up north."
Jamie Nevarez, the wife of Elias Nevarez, said when it comes to boating, it has always been safety first for her husband.
"If they thought in any way that taking that boat out would be dangerous, they would not have done it," she said.
Now the family is holding out hope that the group will soon be found safe.
"We're trying to stay strong and keep positive and know that they're out there just waiting to be found," she said.
Anyone with information about the whereabouts of the three boaters is asked to contact the Coast Guard at 904-564-7511.