Search Expands for Missing Oceanside Fisherman - NBC Southern California

Search Expands for Missing Oceanside Fisherman

The search grid is 17 miles wide and stretches from San Mateo Point to La Jolla



    A U.S. Coast Guard helicopter, two cutters and two response boats searched for a missing Oceanside fisherman along a 17-mile stretch of California coastline.

    Loren Ruden, 53, has been missing for more than 48 hours.

    The search grid is 17 miles wide and stretches from San Mateo Point to La Jolla.

    Ruden launched from Oceanside Marina around 11:30 a.m. Monday morning. His dog was found sitting on the beach just north of Oceanside Pier later that day.

    A passer-by set in motion this search, after calling the phone number engraved on the dog's collar.

    Ruden’s wife told the USCG that her husband was an avid boater and fisherman who never went anywhere without his trusted Lab Mix companion.

    Ruden's 21-foot Striper he named "Lucky Dog" was found 10 miles northwest of La Jolla Tuesday more than 12 hours after he was reported missing.

    The boat was traveling in circles at idle speed with no one aboard.

    Oceanside Harbor Police towed it to Del Mar Boat Basin at Camp Pendleton.

    Fisherman Paul Hartman says his son Josh and fiancée Anna disappeared five years ago after leaving this same marina on a one-day fishing expedition.

    “I don't know how you deal with something like l that. I just try to keep going,” Hartman said.

    Their boat, “The Pelican”, turned up empty on the shore of Rosarito in Mexico. Their personal belongings were still on board. The couple hasn't been seen since.

    “You can slip so quick especially when it's a little bit rough and you're working hauling gear in when the swell and the wind waves hit you from one side,” Hartman said.

    Like The Pelican, The Lucky Dog showed no signs of foul play.

    Searchers and the Ruden family are holding out hope Loren will soon be found.

    Due to the extraordinary circumstances of Ruden's disappearance, the investigation has been handed over to the FBI.

    The agency is responsible for cases involving U.S.-based ships and instances that occur within 12 miles of our shoreline.

    On Wednesday, the U.S. Coast Guard told NBC 7 that searchers had found a life jacket in the search area, but officials believe it's too old to have been used by Ruden.

    A private searcher said he heard a report of a body spotted nine miles west of Del Mar, but found nothing when he and his crew combed that area.

    At 7 p.m. on Wednesday, the U.S. Coast Guard announced they were suspending the search for Ruden.