‘No one was searching for him with me’: Father of US Air Force member who went missing near Surfside Beach finds son’s body

The father found the U.S. Air Force member who went missing near Surfside this past weekend

SURFSIDE BEACH, Texas – The father of a missing U.S. Air Force member who disappeared near Surfside Beach Sunday said he found his son’s body.

Ernesto Posana called KPRC 2 to notify us that he found his son Elijah Posana’s body on his own and pulled it out of the water around 7 a.m. Tuesday.

“No one was searching for him with me,” Posana told KPRC 2.

The Coast Guard suspended the search for 22-year-old Elijah Posana on Monday after they were unable to locate his body.

Crews had been out for 28 hours, covering 100 square miles by boat and air, trying to find Elijah Posana.

Earlier Monday, Elijah Posana’s father pleaded for additional resources to help find his son.

“We cannot just wait like this for his body to go the inland water. We need somebody to search for him 24 hours,” Erneto Posana told KPRC 2.

The elder Posana said his son was using his three weeks leave from his station in Missouri to vacation with his family.

Coast Guard members said Posana was swimming approximately 100 feet from shore when an individual reported seeing him being pulled by a rip current. Boat and helicopter crews were dispatched to search the area.

“The decision to suspend a search is always an extremely difficult one to make,” said Capt. Jason Smith, Sector Houston-Galveston commanding officer. “Every time we run a search and rescue case, we think of the missing as our own and in this case, the missing is a fellow service member, which definitely weighs heavily on our hearts. Our deepest condolences go out to the airman’s family and friends.”

About the Authors:

Daniela Sternitzky-Di Napoli has been a digital news editor at KPRC 2 since 2018. She is a published poet and has background in creative writing and journalism. Daniela has covered events like Hurricane Harvey and the Astros World Series win. In her spare time, Daniela is an avid reader and loves to spend time with her two miniature dachshunds.