Snorkeller presumed lost at sea

| 08/03/2015 | 4 Comments
Cayman News Service

Norman Lee

(CNS): Norman Lee (47), a well known American comic book artist who went missing Thursday while snorkelling with his wife in East End, is presumed dead after police moved to a search and recovery operation on Friday evening. Police have confirmed that despite all of the available resources deployed by the RCIPS, who were assisted by a dozen local dive operators, they have been unable to find Lee.

Speaking on Saturday, RCIPS Eastern District Commander Brad Ebanks said police were unlikely to recover Lee after two full days of searching and no sign of him.

“The currents in that area are strong and it is unlikely that we will make any recovery at this stage. We put all assets available to us, both law enforcement and privately owned. We thank all those who assisted us in this time of need. Unfortunately we were unable to find or recover Mr Lee,” he stated.

Lee, who was visiting Grand Cayman with his wife Jan Lee from Weymouth, Massachusetts., spent over 20 years in the comic book industry, working for both DC and Marvel Comics on books that included the “Avengers” and “X-Men”.

The couple went snorkelling on Thursday morning but were separated while they were swimming some 250 yards off the coast of The Reef Resort. A full-scale search and rescue operation began at around 11:30am when Lee’s wife returned to shore and could not find her husband. The RCIPS Joint Marine Unit, Department of Environment boats, the Cayman helicopter, divers and other watersports operators with wave runners were all involved. On Friday twelve volunteer divers joined in the search, coordinated by the JMU, but there was still no sign of Lee.

Inspector Ian Yearwood declared the rescue operation a recovery Friday evening as a result of weather conditions, the length of time Lee had been missing and the extent of the search without a sign of the missing man.

Lee was described in the Boston press an athlete who had previously worked as a physical trainer.

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Comments (4)

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  1. Rose Titus says:

    Mrs. Lee:

    My sincere condolences. MY Husband vanished in the Caymans in 2009 on our wedding anniversary. HE is forever missed as I know yours truly is as well. Sending heartfelt wishes for peace and healing. I miss my husband still every second.


  2. Anonymous says:

    This is a very sad story. The Reef Resort, Morritt’s along with DoT, CITA and other area stakeholders should collectively fund and sink something else closer to shore – grow an interesting photogenic reef and discourage long distance snorkelers going all the way out to the rough barrier reef or into the channel current of the East End cut. The snorkeling there is not very good – improve it – give them what they want so the curious don’t press further into the danger zone to find things that don’t exist. More & better signage too: dangerous current – no life guard on duty – stay with your buddy – file a snorkel plan with someone on shore. We should want to take the danger out of our travel product wherever we can with the resources available to us.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Condolences to Mr. Lee’s family. Hope his body will be recovered.

  4. Chris says:

    That’s sooooooo sad

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