Coast Guard Suspends Search For Missing Sailor Off Chicago

Mackinac Race
Some of the more than 300 boats competing in the 98th running of the Chicago Yacht Club's Race to Mackinac cross the start line Saturday, July 22, 2006, in Chicago. The race is the world's longest annual freshwater yacht race, stretching 333 miles up Lake Michigan from Chicago to Mackinac Island, Mich. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
Mackinac Race
Some of the more than 300 boats competing in the 98th running of the Chicago Yacht Club's Race to Mackinac cross the start line Saturday, July 22, 2006, in Chicago. The race is the world's longest annual freshwater yacht race, stretching 333 miles up Lake Michigan from Chicago to Mackinac Island, Mich. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Coast Guard Suspends Search For Missing Sailor Off Chicago

The U.S. Coast Guard suspended the search for a missing sailor Saturday evening on Lake Michigan, some seven hours after he fell off a yacht that had just started the Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac.

The sailor was identified as Jon Santarelli, 53, of Chicago. He fell off Imedi, a Transpac 52.

Approximately 20 boats and three helicopters from the Coast Guard, the Chicago Fire Department, the Chicago Police Department and the Chicago Yacht Club searched 47 square miles. All competitors in the vicinity had immediately suspended racing to assist in the search.

Santarelli went missing approximately five miles east of Navy Pier, 40 minutes after Imedi began the 110th edition of the offshore classic.

Santorelli had more than a decade of offshore racing experience and was a core member of the Imedi Racing team.