Tragic Ending to Fishing Trip for Florida Deputy; 3 Family Members Dead, Including Son

A day out on the boat came to a tragic end for a Palm Beach County Sheriff’s deputy and three of his family members – including his own son.

Deputy Fernandez Jones, his 9-year-old son Jaiden, Jones’ stepfather Willis Bell and a cousin, Robert Steward, went fishing on the Intracoastal Waterway Sunday morning, reports CBS Miami.

The family left Sandsprit Park in Stuart around 8 a.m. in a 24-foot Sea Ray Laguna boat, according to CBS affiliate WPEC in Palm Beach.

When they failed to return, Jones’ wife called the authorities.

The U.S. Coast Guard, along with officers from the Martin County Sheriff’s Office, St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office, Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office and the state’s Fish and Wildlife department, launched an all out search.

Monday morning the Martin County Sheriff’s Office put out on Twitter, that the body of one of the missing had been found on the beach near the House of Refuge. A second tweet said two more bodies had been found in the St. Lucie Inlet along with a survivor, the cousin Robert Steward.

Sheriff William Snyder offers condolences to PBSO and the victim’s families. “We will work through this together.”

Jones has been a deputy with the Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office for the last two years. Before that he was with the Miami-Dade police department for 20 years.

The most recent update listed Jones in serious condition, as of 5:09 p.m. on Monday, April 11th.


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