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26-Year-Old Marine Goes Missing in the Water Off Puerto Rico Beach While on Trip with Family

Samuel Wanjiru, 26, was visiting the island with his family when he vanished on Wednesday, the U.S. Coast Guard said

<p>U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Juan</p> A search is underway after Samuel Wanjiru, 26, "came into distress" and vanished after going into the water in the beach area of “La Pared” in Luquillo on Wednesday, the U.S. Coast Guard said.

U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Juan

A search is underway after Samuel Wanjiru, 26, "came into distress" and vanished after going into the water in the beach area of “La Pared” in Luquillo on Wednesday, the U.S. Coast Guard said.
  • Samuel Wanjiru, 26, was visiting Puerto Rico with his family when he "came into distress" after going into the water on Wednesday, the U.S. Coast Guard said

  • His disappearance came after a man was found dead in the water off Montones Beach in Isabela, according to authorities

  • Capt. Jose E. Díaz, commander of U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Juan, said that most open beaches in Puerto Rico do not have lifeguards

Authorities are continuing to search for a U.S. Marine who vanished while swimming at a Puerto Rico beach on Wednesday.

Samuel Wanjiru, 26, was visiting the island with his family when he "came into distress" in the beach area of “La Pared” in Luquillo, the U.S. Coast Guard said Thursday.

The U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Juan said in a Facebook post update that a 33-foot Special Purpose Craft is currently conducting shoreline searches on-scene Friday morning.

The 26-year-old is a reserve Marine assigned to Marine Wing Support Squadro 472, Marine Aircraft Group 49, 4th Marine Aircraft Wing, in Chicopee, ABC affiliate WCVB reported.

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"Coast Guard crews and watchstanders have been working alongside local emergency response agencies" since he went missing, the U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Juan said.

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Wanjiru's disappearance came after a man died after going into "distress" in the water off Montones Beach earlier that same day.

"As a Coast Guard MH-60T Jayhawk helicopter crew responded to the scene, local authorities reported the man was recovered unresponsive and later declared deceased," officials said.

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"This month has been deadly when it comes to beach drownings in the area of Puerto Rico," Capt. Jose E. Díaz, commander of U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Juan, said in a statement. "During this long-holiday weekend, I urge locals and visitors to pay close attention to the weather conditions and warnings from the National Weather Service and that they don’t go into the water when visiting beaches in the west, north and eastern coasts of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands until conditions subside."

Related: Florida Dad Dies After Saving Friend's 6-Year-Old Child from Drowning: 'He Is a Hero Now,' Says Wife

"The National Weather Service in San Juan Puerto Rico has advised of High-Surf, Small-Craft and Life-Threatening reef Current Advisories for eastern, northern, and western beaches in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands through the weekend," the Coast Guard warned Thursday.

Díaz went on to note that most open beaches in Puerto Rico do not have lifeguards.

"People need to realize that the situation is serious enough to limit our ability to respond to search and rescue cases with surface vessels without further endangering our crews and assets," he added.

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