Missing mariner found safe

The Coast Guard suspended search efforts after a mariner who was reported missing while on a sailing trip between Houston and Ocean Springs was found Tuesday.

After encountering a storm on his sailing trip, Josiah Victor Hoffman, 52, noticed his rudder was inoperable. He anchored his vessel off the coast of Marsh Island, La., in Vermilion Bay.

Watchstanders at the Eighth Coast Guard District command center received an overdue vessel report from Hoffman's wife at approximately 12:45 p.m., Monday, reporting that her husband did not return to port when expected. Hoffman became overdue from a sailing trip after he departed from Houston on Jan. 3, 2011, en route to Ocean Springs.

The initial search area consisted of a majority of the Gulf of Mexico. After interviews with Hoffman's wife and his friend, the Coast Guard watchstanders determined a much smaller, more manageable search area, approximately the size of Maryland.

Read more about this story in Thursday's Sun Herald.