South Carolina

21-year-old disappears while swimming with friends off the NC coast, cops say

Ian William Malson is being searched for after going missing while swimming with friends.
Ian William Malson is being searched for after going missing while swimming with friends. New Hanover County Sheriff's Office

The search for a man who disappeared while swimming with friends at a North Carolina beach resumed Sunday morning, the Coast Guard said.

Rescue services began the search late Saturday night after learning a man swimming with friends was reported missing near Wrightsville Beach, StarNews reported.

The missing man was identified as 21-year-old Ian William Malson, the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office said in a Facebook post.

Malson was described by the Sheriff’s Office as a 5-foot-8, 130- to 140-pound man who was last seen wearing blue shorts and a purple shirt near Palm Tree Island in the Intracoastal Waterway.

The Coast Guard said Malson was swimming near the island and his friends did not realize he was missing until they returned to their boat, according to WECT.

The search included Coast Guard boats and a helicopter from New Hanover County, per StarNews.

After it was called off, the search resumed Sunday morning, from the water and air, with assistance of volunteers, WECT reported.

The Sheriff’s Office is asking for help finding Malson, and asked anyone with information to call 910-798-4261.

This is a developing story; check back for updates.

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Noah Feit is a Real Time reporter with The State and McClatchy Carolinas Regional Team. The award-winning journalist has worked for multiple newspapers since starting his career in 1999.
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