Search for missing Smith Lake boater suspended for Sunday; 1 dead in Lake Wedowee crash


CULLMAN, Ala. – The search for missing boater Kelsey Starling has been postponed for Sunday, according to ALEA Marine Patrol Division Northern District Assistant Commander Sgt. Chad Pate. Starling has been missing since a boating accident on Smith Lake the night of July 4.

Pate said the threat of unfavorable weather conditions was a factor in the decision to suspend Sunday’s search effort.  He said plans are to resume with the search Monday if weather permits. 

Fatality July 14 on Lake Wedowee

A two-vessel collision on Lake Wedowee near the city of Wedowee Sunday, July 14 left one person dead and one injured. The incident happened at approximately 9 a.m.

Pate said both vessels were personal watercrafts- one driven by a 53-year-old male and one by a 17-year-old female. He said the pair, a father and daughter from Atlanta, collided, resulting in the death of the father.  The daughter’s leg was amputated. She was flown to a hospital in Georgia. 

Pate said the family has requested the names not be released.

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Wendy Sack