Coast Guard suspends search for 3 missing minors in Mississippi River

The U.S. Coast Guard confirmed late Sunday it has suspended its search for two girls and a boy near the Crescent City Connection bridge.The suspension came about 24 hours after the children — Ally Wilson, 8; Brandy Wilson, 14; and a 15-year-old friend — were last seen playing along the west bank of the Mississippi River in New Orleans’ Algiers neighborhood. One of the girls fell into the water, prompting the other two to try saving her. Onlookers suspect the currents took them away.”The decision to suspend any search and rescue case is never easy but considering the extensive search efforts of our Coast Guard men and women, in conjunction with other response agencies, I’ve made the difficult decision to suspend our active search for the three children,” Coast Guard sector commander Capt. Kelly Denning told WDSU in a statement Sunday night. “Our prayers are with the families during this difficult time.”Rescue crews searched more than 93 miles along the Mississippi River with a combined 55 total hours. The search involved MH-65 Dolphin helicopters, Coast Guard boat crews, as well as police from Orleans, Jefferson, St. Bernard and St. Charles parishes.Before the search was suspended, relatives of Brandy and Ally Wilson spent Sunday afternoon gathered along a levee near a Coast Guard staging area.”I need my kids,” mother Octavia Wilson told reporters. “I need them. I need them more than anything. They’re my reason for living. I need my children. I need them.”The family had hoped to continue their mission, if only to recover the minors’ bodies.”I know that they not breathing in that water,” the girls’ aunt Shwron Johnson said before crews stopped searching. “I just hope that they could get their bodies back all in one part so we can do the proper things and give them a proper service. That’s the only hope we have.”The missing 15-year-old boy’s family has requested media not to disclose his name until they feel ready.

The U.S. Coast Guard confirmed late Sunday it has suspended its search for two girls and a boy near the Crescent City Connection bridge.

The suspension came about 24 hours after the children — Ally Wilson, 8; Brandy Wilson, 14; and a 15-year-old friend — were last seen playing along the west bank of the Mississippi River in New Orleans’ Algiers neighborhood. One of the girls fell into the water, prompting the other two to try saving her. Onlookers suspect the currents took them away.

“The decision to suspend any search and rescue case is never easy but considering the extensive search efforts of our Coast Guard men and women, in conjunction with other response agencies, I’ve made the difficult decision to suspend our active search for the three children,” Coast Guard sector commander Capt. Kelly Denning told WDSU in a statement Sunday night. “Our prayers are with the families during this difficult time.”

Rescue crews searched more than 93 miles along the Mississippi River with a combined 55 total hours. The search involved MH-65 Dolphin helicopters, Coast Guard boat crews, as well as police from Orleans, Jefferson, St. Bernard and St. Charles parishes.

Before the search was suspended, relatives of Brandy and Ally Wilson spent Sunday afternoon gathered along a levee near a Coast Guard staging area.

“I need my kids,” mother Octavia Wilson told reporters. “I need them. I need them more than anything. They’re my reason for living. I need my children. I need them.”

The family had hoped to continue their mission, if only to recover the minors’ bodies.

“I know that they not breathing in that water,” the girls’ aunt Shwron Johnson said before crews stopped searching. “I just hope that they could get their bodies back all in one part so we can do the proper things and give them a proper service. That’s the only hope we have.”

The missing 15-year-old boy’s family has requested media not to disclose his name until they feel ready.

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