20 Sep 2017

Lost Coaster an experienced fisherman

6:20 pm on 20 September 2017

The man whose body was recovered by search and rescue crews off the West Coast was an experienced fisherman, his family have said.

Jay Cairney, who was 43.

Jay Cairney, who was 43. Photo: Supplied

Police said the two men who went missing when the fishing boat Wendy J sank last week in bad weather off Jackson Bay were Jay Cairney, 43 - whose body was found on Tuesday - and Kieran Lynch, 22, who remains missing.

They were both from Greymouth.

Mr Cairney's family, in a statement, said he was an experienced fisherman who loved the sea and always put others first. He was "generous to a fault, loved life in all its capacity" and would be missed by all who knew him, the family said.

Police dive squad members would continue to search for Mr Lynch on Wednesday, depending on the weather.

His family said they were grateful for the continued efforts and they were still hopeful for his safe return.

"We would also like to pass our heartfelt condolences and thoughts to the Cairney family at this sad time," the family said.

Sergeant Mathew Tailby said searches of the bay, shoreline and tracks had revealed no sign of Mr Lynch. He said that sadly police had reached the point where the search was exhausted in these areas.

The Wendy J foundered last Thursday night in bad weather near Jackson Bay, South Westland, when it is thought to have lost power.

One man survived the inciden. He has asked for privacy while he recovers, police said.