The Search for Clarence HolmesNovember 9 2016
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Name: Dave Tonneman
Account ID: 208255519
July 5th 2012, Clarence W. Holmes was last seen headed back to Holly Bay Marina on Laurel River Lake in southern Kentucky. He had been on the lake prior to a storm assisting a friend in securing their houseboat. Later that evening after the storm had passed, his pontoon boat was found against the shore of a mid-lake island, engine running in neutral. Local authorities began an intensive land and water search. Numerous agencies worked the lake for over a week, Clarence was not found. The family brought in several outside experts to search for Clarence. The family also performed an extensive search utilizing a drop camera. In early 2014 Mark Michaud of Southeast Louisiana Underwater Search and Recovery was contacted. In late 2015 Benthic Adventures began looking at the search in support of Mark and his efforts.
Many Hundreds of hours were expended searching using side scan sonar and divers. Cadaver trained K9's were brought in and they located an area that is believed to contain human remains. Another volunteer was brought in to run scanning sonar searches and after 5 days of runs he had a viable target detected suspended in a tree in 160' of water.
Numerous trips and many hours of diving have narrowed down the precise location of what is believed to be the resting place of Clarence Holmes. Early November 2016 we are going back on the water to narrow the search and locate and recover what we believe to be Clarence.
This effort is non compensated and all divers and other personnel have to take time off work, many unpaid. The family bears the cost of providing food and lodging, a burden that has worn on them due to the duration of this search. All equipment is purchased or provided by the volunteer staff as are the breathing gas mixes that each diver provides for themselves.
I will be attempting to update this story from the lake as time and connectivity permit.