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Beloved Longview chiropractor missing after shark dive in Bahamas, crews find dive gear

Beloved Longview chiropractor missing after shark dive in Bahamas, crews find dive gear

POSTED: Tuesday, July 15, 2014 - 10:40am

UPDATED: Monday, July 28, 2014 - 10:32am

A beloved Longview chiropractor has gone missing after a shark dive 20 nautical miles off the coast of the Bahamas.

Coast Guard 7th District command center watchstanders were contacted by the captain aboard the commercial dive vessel "Shear Water," off the coast of West End, Bahamas, late Sunday night, stating Dr. John Petty, 63, went shark diving with eight others and he never resurfaced.

On Tuesday afternoon, the USCG said a mask was found during the deep sea search, although it is not confirmed whether or not the mask belongs to Dr. Petty.

The Coast Guard immediately launched multiple air and sea assets that have been searching since. Currently on scene supporting Bahamian authorities and searching are the crews aboard:

◾Coast Guard Cutter Dolphin, homeported in Miami, Florida.

◾Coast Guard Air Station Miami HC-144 Ocean Sentry aircraft.

◾Coast Guard Air Station Miami MH-65 Dolphin rescue helicopter.

An Urgent Marine Information Broadcast was also issued.

KETK will update information as soon as it is available.


In addition to being a well-respected chiropractor in Longview, Petty is an award-winning adventure photographer.This weekend, the Longview Museum of Fine Arts is opening an exhibit featuring some of Petty's works from his last trip to Africa.

Museum Director Renee Hawkins says the exhibit will be hard given the circumstances, but still special.

"We're happy to show his work," said Hawkins. "We obviously thought he was museum-worthy by asking him to be in this show, so he's special to us and this is special to us." 

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Diving 101...where was his dive buddy?

Yikes @susieteller why don't they change their diapers too?
The good Dr went because of the element of RISK.
It's no fun otherwise.
Everyone knows this is the exact wrong time to be around sharks.
Sharks are more active in the warm weather/water.
That's why ocean swimmers are warned to be aware of sharks & not take risks.
Obviously the good Dr thought he could handle it.
Little did he know his luck had run out.
He became lunch for hungry sharks.
Our thoughts go out to his family & loved ones.

why dont these big commercial ships not have monitors to watch every diver with a signal they ca give when they are in distress..a monitor that sees them..not a dot on a screen to see where they re but an actual picture of every diver going in deep shark waters..every diver ship should have a main priority,,know wgere every diver is and have a code to signal when in danger..a hand signal..something..these ships arent cheap and money should always be spent to do everything to protect these divers

With all due respect, at some point a person makes a choice to do dangerous things whether its skydiving, mountain climbing, bungy jumping living amongst bears, wrestling alligators, or scuba/shark diving. Its a CHOICE to put oneself in danger and now people like you have all these brilliant ideas on how to save those adventure seeking people when the choice has already been made. Its sad, no doubt, and thought provoking but freedom has many faces my friend and so does common sense.

I like the saying " If you don't live for die for nothing..."

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