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Couple found dead in water after sailboat washes up near Rockaway Beach

The 36-foot sailboat washed up at Nedonna Beach, just north of Rockaway Beach, on Sunday night.

NEDONNA BEACH, Ore. — A man and a woman were found dead in the water after a 36-foot sailboat washed up at Nedonna Beach, just north of Rockaway Beach, on the Oregon coast Sunday night. According to the Tillamook County Sheriff's Office, the man and woman were married.

Multiple calls came in about a sailboat tossing around in the surf at Nedonna Beach around 6:50 p.m. Sunday. The U.S. Coast Guard (USGS) sent a helicopter to the scene and found two bodies in the water.

The USGS said one of the bodies was found near a dinghy and the other was found under the boat. 

Credit: Pam Zapp
A sailboat, washed up on the shore at Nedonna Beach, Ore., just north of Rockaway Beach, on Monday, Oct. 4, 2021. Photo credit: Pam Zapp Credit: Pam Zapp

The name of the sailboat was Bagheera, according to the USGS, and it left Sunday at 4 a.m. from an unidentified location and was headed to California.

Residents near Nedonna Beach told KGW they saw the sailboat just offshore before it ended up capsized and washed to shore. Terry Bowman said he was watching football on TV but then heard the Coast Guard helicopter and emergency workers on the ground coming onto the beach.

"My wife and are both open ocean sailors from the past and know something about this, it’s very sad," said Bowman.

The sailboat was removed from the beach in pieces Monday afternoon. The Tillamook County Sheriff's Office is leading the investigation into what happened.  No new details had been released as of Tuesday evening.

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