Lafayette man missing after boat collision in Butte la Rose

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BUTTE LA ROSE, La. (KLFY) — A Lafayette man is still missing after a boat collision south of Butte la Rose Thursday afternoon. Multiple authorities are searching for who the family has identified as Bob Schoeffler.

About 15 boats assisted in the search Friday from sunrise to sunset along the Atchafalaya River. Family said their loved one was going out to fish and another boat was coming in and they collided.

According to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, two recreational boats collided with one another Thursday afternoon about two miles south of Butte La Rose.

One boat had two occupants, while the second boat had one. That one man was knocked unconscious but rescued before his boat sank. The other two men were thrown by the hit. One swam to safety, but the other is still missing.

“The guy who was in the other boat is on life support, so he’s not in very good shape at all. He was seriously injured, and I would guess that’s the same with my brother. He was seriously injured,” stated Harold Schoeffler. “

He searched the calm waters, while his heart quivered. Harold Schoeffler is the older brother of Bob Schoeffler who went missing. He said his brother one year younger than him had just retired as a Lafayette architect the same day he went fishing for bass and brim.

“He fished often,” Harold recalled. “We hunted alligators together. We canoed from Lafayette to Intercostal City one night in one night. Lots of great memories of growing up in the outdoors together.”

Thursday afternoon and from sunrise to sunset Friday, the St. Martin Sheriff’s Department, Iberia Sheriff’s Department, Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, and good Samaritans from their camps searched the waters. Most of the boats were from the Schoeffler family.

Harold said they were, “A crew of very courteous, professional people helping out. The people who live along here have been most helpful and courteous, so thanks to all of them.”

Volunteers, authorities, and the family will continue their search all weekend until the family is given closure.

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