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October 25, 2013

Missing Maine kayaker found, and he’s fine

Matt Grabowski left Stonington on Monday on a camping trip and couldn’t check in as planned because his cellphone battery died.

By David Hench
Staff Writer

A kayaker was found in good condition Friday afternoon off Stonington after an intensive Coast Guard search.

Matt Grabowski, 30, left on a camping trip from Hatch Cove in Stonington on Tuesday and was scheduled to return Friday. He was checking in nightly with a friend’s father but did not call in as planned Thursday and was reported missing.

The Coast Guard launched a search Thursday night as gale-force winds battered the area and continued into the day Friday while a small-craft advisory was in effect.

A Coast Guard helicopter spotted Grabowski at 1:30 p.m. kayaking between Stinson Neck and Sheep Island near Stonington and relayed his position to the Maine Marine Patrol, which confirmed his identity.

Grabowski told them his cellphone had run out of power and he had not powered up his VHF radio to check in.

Grabowski last checked in Wednesday at 6 p.m. from Burnt Island on the north side of Isle au Haut. He was scheduled to stay on Isle au Haut on Thursday night.

The Coast Guard also deployed a 47-foot motor lifeboat from Southwest Harbor and an airplane from Cape Cod.

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