Thea Digiammerino

Search for Missing Teen Kayaker in Old Saybrook Suspended

The US Coast Guard has suspended their search for a missing teen kayaker in Old Saybrook that began after a boater found an overturned kayak Monday afternoon.

USCG officials said they were searching 18-year-old William Zadrozny after the capsized kayak was found at the mouth of the Connecticut River between the two break walls around 4:55 p.m.

Keith Williams, of the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection's environmental conservation police, said they found Zadrozny's car in the parking lot of North Cove and believe he left from there at some point early Monday afternoon.

Crews searched for approximately 24 hours. The search was suspended indefinitely Tuesday evening pending new information.

“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 in a statement. “The decision to suspend is never made lightly, and our hearts go out to the family and friends of William Zadrozny.”

Officials said they are in contact with his family. Zadrozny is believed to have been wearing work boots, a gray and yellow jacket and jeans.

A personal flotation device and fishing gear were found attached to the kayak, Williams said. It is a state law to wear a lifejacket while on a paddlecraft from October 1 through May 31.

While the air temperatures have been warm, water temperatures are in the mid-50s, officials said.

Old Saybrook police said 10 mutual aid fire agencies were searching a 10-nautical mile radius for Zadrozny.

“We are searching in the Connecticut River and we are also searching outside the mouth of the Connecticut River, both to the east and the west. We’re searching with boats, with a helicopter, and with a plane,” Andrew Ely, of the Coast Guard, said.

“We are covering the area thoroughly, looking all along the shoreline, looking at any buoys or any other things that float that maybe he could be hanging onto,” he added.

This incident is not related to the search for two missing boaters in Groton, fire officials confirmed.

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