Coast Guard suspends search for 18-year-old kayaker in Old Saybrook

OLD SAYBROOK - The Coast Guard suspended their search late Tuesday afternoon for a missing kayaker, whose bit was discovered capsized near the mouth of the Connecticut River in Old Saybrook.

The missing person is William Zadrozny, an 18-year-old male, reportedly wearing work boots, a grey and yellow jacket, and jeans.

“After working with our port partners to search extensively throughout the night and today, we’ve made the difficult decision to suspend the search,” said Cmdr. Andrew Ely, chief of response, Coast Guard Sector Long Island Sound. “The decision to suspend is never made lightly, and our hearts go out to the family and friends of William Zadrozny.”

At approximately 5 p.m., Monday, the Coast Guard received a call from a good samaritan reporting the overturned kayak, which contained a life jacket and fishing gear on board.

Capt. Keith Williams, of the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), said investigators found the teenager’s car in a parking lot next to a boat launch, on North Cove Road.

Williams also said they do not believe Zadrozny was wearing a personal flotation device, which is mandated by law in Connecticut, between Oct. 1 and May 31, if you are aboard a vessel that is not powered by an engine.

The temperature of the water, near the mouth of the Connecticut River, on Monday afternoon, was 56°, according to DEEP.

Ely said a person wearing a personal flotation device, in water that cold, could survive for approximately 20 hours.

The Coast Guard along, with state and local agencies, searched for a total of 33 hours and saturated a 381 square-mile area in their attempt to locate the missing kayaker.

The Coast Guard’s search will remain suspended pending the development of new information.