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Coast Guard suspends search for missing free diver

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  • Rescue crews continued their search today for Amber Savant

The Coast Guard suspended its search for a missing free diver, who was swept out to sea while diving near Kapoho Bay on Hawaii island Sunday. 

The Coast Guard suspended its search late Wednesday for 33-year-old Amber Savant, of Kona. But the agency was still assisting Hawaii County Fire Department efforts Thursday. 

A HC-130 Hercules plane, HM-65 Dolphin helicopter and the cutters Kittiwake and Galveston Island helped search about 4,516 square miles for Savant since Sunday, the Coast Guard said. 

Hawaii County Fire Department jet ski and helicopter crews and a Navy MH-60 helicopter crew from the 37th Helicopter Squadron out of Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Kaneohe also participated in the search. 

Crews recovered a spear-gun, fins, gloves, snorkel, mask, weight belt with knife and five pounds of dive weights from Kapoho Bay during the search effort. All were identified as belonging to Savant. 

Savant was spear fishing with two friends Sunday afternoon when the rip current started pulling her out to deeper water near the outer reef. 

The dive party encountered strong tides and currents during their first dive around 2:30 p.m. 

She was last seen 150 yards from the shore. 

Savant is described as 5-foot-7, 140 pounds with blonde hair. She was last seen wearing camouflage pants, a black tank top, dive weights and carrying a spear gun. 

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