UPDATE: Missing kayakers identified

Area law enforcement searching Sandusky Bay area for a father and daughter.
Sandusky Register Staff
Apr 7, 2013

UPDATE (5:40 p.m.): The Coast Guard ended its search for the missing kayakers.

UPDATE (1:20 p.m.): Search crews have called off the search for the missing kayakers, although a Coast Guard helicopter is still flying over the area. Quite a few family members and friends have remained searching along the shoreline, while about 20 people have gathered at the family's home in Margaretta Township. 

UPDATE (12:40 p.m.): Jonathan Francis, 30, and his daughter Viola, 12, are still missing. The two were last seen in their boats around 5 p.m. Saturday.

UPDATE (10:29 a.m.): Both kayaks have been located near Lightner road in Ottawa County, but are empty.

The adult male and 12-year-old female were last seen Saturday evening putting their blue and lime green kayaks in the water in from Crystal Rock to paddle to the Edison Bridge and back. The two have not been seen since. They were not wearing personal flotation devices.

The Coast Guard is currently searching for the father/daughter.

If seen, the public is urged to call 911 or call the Erie County Sheriff 419.625.7951.

The sheriff's office and Margaretta Township fire department are currently checking the shoreline.



I don't see no choppers out there.

Kottage Kat

Please pray if you are so inclined
Leave the hate out of this
A family is suffering
They have enough deal with
Show some compassion
If unable to do that
Silence is a good option
Thank you


Good advice. However it's a public forum and I've noticed a lot of insensitive comments on a lot of SR articles. Prayers to this family. It can not be easy for them to go through.


they have stopped now, search has been called off...


Praying hard for a good outcome. But I do have to wonder, why were they not wearing life vests?

Yellow Snow

Keep the positive thoughts going. They're going to need it. It was warm today, let's hope they made it to shore somewhere. I hope they're found cold, hungry, and ready to go home.




Not sure why my comment was removed....how did i violate your rules???


why u going to wait till 5am to report them missing???? If my kid wasn't home at dark I would of been looking and called the cops why wait 12 hrs later???


I wondered that too.


Why are the calling off the search. Theres still daylight. Keep searching. We dont mind our tax money paying for this. Keep searching for that little girl. Bring in lights if you have to.

Sitting In The ...

Sadly it's no longer a rescue mission...This time of year the lake is near freezing and the effects of hypothermia are nearly instant. I'll leave it at that.


Yes, I agree. They should have never called of the search till at least sunset, shm. Just goes to see where the "power to be's" prioritys really are. They need to do there jobs!! Sandusky Co. should be out there too!!! Got a bad feeling this is going to end up on Danbury Township's lap. Family is in our prayers.


People really shouldn't be nasty about a child's mother. Nobody's perfect and people make mistakes. A child is missing. If u can't say something nice you really should keep ur comments to yourself


AGREED 100% this is my family and idc what is, its in the past people change!!!!


Ok, I read dad, step day, drugs in family. Would there be a chance this was set up and they have crossed the boarder into Canada for a new life start? Just speculating!


that's always a possibility, but I really doubt that is the case here


Well, better than the alternative, one is a personal choice, the other is in gods hands and a little over a week in this case.


I could care less about the mom's past, the dad's past or the dog's past. All I know is a man and his baby girl are missing. The family needs all the prayers and support they can be given.


Agree !!!!!


My thoughts and prayers are with the family!

Sitting In The ...

The Coast Guard has said "It has indefinitely suspended the search for a missing father and daughter on Lake Erie". Very sad news....


How close to one another were the kayaks found?


Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).

BULLISDEEP's picture

YOU mean a 180 to fix his life , a 360 would be right back where he started.


Good catch Bullis


JMAC, I have lived and boated on Lake Erie and her surrounding lakes my entire life. My 2cents may be too late for your relatives and I am sorry for your potential loss. I have expressed my thoughts in the SR way before these blogs ever starting, 1987 (The readers forum) my concerns about boating, people that go on the bay or lake having limited experience and get into trouble. I try to post here to make people think. Middle age, yes but very happy, LOL thank you. These posts of mine are again to make people think. At age 14 I was asked to move a racing sailboat from SSC to CYC for an upcoming race, no GPS, No radar no nothing. While fueling at CP docks the fuel kid was freaked out when I pulled to the dock and backed out just as fast. You see, I saw a line squall coming in and as taught in grade school, "go to sea" for a storm or get battered at the dock, it blew 80 MPH but I knew what to look for from experience and a great father who taught me well. I could share a lifetime of experience but that will not bring your relatives back. I write to caution people, possibly the people that saw your relatives leave could have thrown a flag to the USCG as well. Again, we can only speculate and I am very sorry, I wish they were in Canada!


I agree about knowing what the Lake can throw at you.


agreed! jmac


Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).