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Coast Guard continues search for missing Naples oncologist believed to be lost at sea

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Posted at 4:21 PM, Aug 12, 2022

UPDATE - As of Sunday, the Coast Guard has suspended the search for Dr. Cross. Click here to read our latest coverage.

Our original report continues below:
The United States Coast Guard is on day two of their search for a missing boater. That boater is Dr. Chaundre Cross, a prominent Naples oncologist.

Cross was last seen getting on his boat Wednesday morning at the Naples Bay Marina. Since then, no one has seen him. A Coast Guard C-130 found his boat on Thursday near Sanibel Island in the middle of the water, but Cross wasn't on it. There was no damage or anything suspicious on the boat, the Coast Guard said.

On Friday, the Coast Guard spent the day searching for him between Marco Island and Fort Myers Beach. They're hoping he's in the water with a life jacket on.

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"We’re treating it as though he’s in the water and could hopefully wave to us or signal to us in some form or fashion," said Petty Officer Ayla Hudson.

Cross works for Genesis Care in Naples as an oncologist. Genesis Care provided a statement about his disappearance.

Our first priority is the safety and well-being of our employees and patients. We are concerned for the well-being and safety of Dr. Cross and are here to support all of our employees and to ensure the continuation of care for our patients. Our Naples and Bonita Springs offices will continue operations to ensure continuous care for our patients. We have other physician coverage and support from the community. We will continue to care for our patients.

Genesis Care

The Coast Guard says friends and family are also on the water searching for the doctor. Many people have been posting about Cross online, expressing how much of an impact he's made on their lives whether as a friend or saving a loved one.

"He picked up my son to shadow him on an oncologist route as my son Andrew Sanchez was searching for a career choice," said Yiseni Sanchez. "His efforts and guidance enlightened my son to make better life choices."

Amanda Johnson says that she was a part of Friday's search party and she still has hope they're going to find him alive. That hope is echoed by Sanchez.

"I truly pray that we find him and bring him back safely to his family," she said.

The Coast Guard is asking other boaters to keep an eye out for Dr. Cross, even sending a message over the radio. For those boaters, the Coast Guard wants you to know they're searching about 45 by 45 nautical miles off Naples Beach, Marco Island, and Fort Myers Beach.

It's not clear as of Friday afternoon if the Coast Guard will search throughout the night.

See our previous reporting here.