The parents of teenagers Perry Cohen and Austin Stephanos, who went missing last summer off the Florida coast, announced on Saturday that the boys’ boat and one of their cell phones had been recovered.
Pamela Cohen and Nick Korlinoff, Perry’s parents, said that a Norwegian research vessel discovered the capsized boat on March 18 approximately 100 miles off the coast of Bermuda, according to the Palm Beach Post.
The crew recognized the 19-foot boat by the serial number on the engine, which matched that of the missing Florida boys' vessel.
They also uncovered an iPhone inside the boat, which they believe belonged to Austin.
All of the recovered materials have been submitted to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation. The boat is en route back to Florida and is expected to arrive on May 16.
Cohen and Stephanos went missing on July 24, 2015, when they set out to sea off the coast of south Florida on a fishing trip.
The U.S. Coast Guard spotted the boys’ boat two days after they went missing on July 26, but reportedly lost its location while waiting to transport the vessel back to shore. They called off their search the same day.
On Aug. 9, 2015, the Perry’s and Stephanos’ families — who had fundraised and initiated their own search — called off their own private search, saying it was no longer practical.
“This has been nine months now of pain and suffering. We’d like to have some sort of closure,” Nick Korniloff, Perry’s father, told the Palm Beach Post on Saturday.
In a statement she posted to Instagram Saturday, Pamela Cohen said, “This is an open Missing Persons case, and we hope that FWC reopens their investigation and utilizes the expert resources of other government agencies as well as the private sector if necessary to extrapolate the data from the recovered iPhone.”
BuzzFeed News has reached out to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission and the U.S. Coast Guard for more information.
Tamerra Griffin is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based Nairobi, Kenya.
Contact Tamerra Griffin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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