"It is with a heavy heart and sincere condolences to the family and friends that I do this," said Captain Greg Case of the U.S. Coast Guard in a briefing

By Danielle Anderson
Updated June 25, 2016 01:00 PM
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Credit: Source: USCGSoutheast/Twitter

The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended the search for the Florida family missing in the Gulf of Mexico.

“It is with a heavy heart and sincere condolences to the family and friends that I do this,” said Captain Greg Case of the U.S. Coast Guard in a briefing on Saturday. “This is probably the most difficult decision I ever have to make in this position.”

The decision comes after 5 days of searching 34,000 nautical sq miles for the Kimberly family and their 29-foot sailboat. Dad Ace, 45, and his three kids Roger, 13, Donny, 15 and Rebecca, 17 were last heard from on Sunday afternoon when Ace called his brother to report that they were caught “in 6-foot seas and he was attempting to survive with his children,” the Coast Guard said in a statement.

Rescue teams pulled an unidentified body out of the water on Thursday and a mast believed to be from the family’s sailboat, according to a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard.

The first body, found on Wednesday, was identified as 17-year-old Rebecca Kimberly. The teen had been living with her father and brothers on the boat in Sarasota, Florida for a year.

The family was headed to Fort Myers for repairs to the sailboat. Ace’s brother alerted the Coast Guard Tuesday after the family failed to reach their destination.