• Thursday Update on Search

    SGT Chad Pate, ALEA Marine Patrol – The search for the missing boater Kelsey Starling on Smith Lake continues. Kelsey has been missing since a boating crash on July 4.

    Alex City Rescue Squad, Smith Lake Task Force, North Alabama Search Dog, ALEA Aviation and ALEA Marine Patrol all participated in the search efforts on Wednesday.

    On Thursday, Colbert County has personnel here running sonar and an underwater camera.  Winston County EMA and ALEA Marine Patrol are on site assisting with the search also.


  • Wednesday Morning Updat-SGT Pate-ALEA

    The search efforts resumed this morning.  North Alabama Search Dog has been utilizing cadaver dogs.  Alexander City Rescue Squad is here with a 360-degree imaging sonar.  It is placed on the bottom and gives a 360-degree image of the area.  ALEA Aviation conducted an aerial search this morning and will do the same this evening.  Smith Lake Task Force, Winston County EMA, and ALEA Marine patrol Division are assisting in the search efforts.

  • Tuesday Update on Search

    The search resumed this morning.  Nothing new to report as far as findings.  Christian Aid Ministries SAR Unit is still utilizing sonar to try and identify objects that are on the bottom.  Divers are on scene to dive on targets that can’t be ruled out with sonar.  Divers have already been in the water this morning searching.  ALEA Aviation flew over the area this morning to do an aerial search.  ALEA Marine Patrol boats are on scene.  There are other agencies there as well.  I hope to have a full list of those involved in my next update.

    Sgt. Chad Pate,  ALEA-Marine Patrol Division, Northern District Assistant Commander

  • One Missing Following Boat Collision – Updated!

    Two boats collided on Smith Lake near Rock Creek Thursday evening July 4, around 10 p.m., resulting in five people injured and one person missing. Members of the Haleyville Rescue and ALEA Marine Patrol and other volunteers from North Alabama have been searching for the missing 26-year-old Kelsey Starling, a Troy native and speech pathologist at Tuggle Elementary School in Birmingham from Troy since Thursday night. With the aid of sonar brought in from Tennessee, the search was continued through Sunday afternoon until halted late in the day because of weather. The search began again on Monday morning. Starling was a passenger in a 2012 Mastercraft wakeboard boat driven by 23-year-old William Jackson Fite of Decatur. Fite was booked into the Winston County Jail early Friday on a charge of boating under the influence. Fite posted a bond and was released.

    MONDAY – Sgt Chad Pate ALEA update:

    There are no new developments at this time for the search on Smith Lake.  Christian Aid Ministries Search & Rescue Unit, Cullman County S.O., ALEA Aviation, and ALEA Marine Patrol are on scene.  The only new asset that is being used today is an ROV (remotely operated vehicle) that Christian Aid Ministries SAR unit brought down today.  It is being used to get a better image in the deeper water.

  • Pedestrian Hit by Car

    Glenn Collins, 55, Haleyville, was walking accross Highway 13 at the Friendly Convenience Store at approximately 9 p.m. Friday evening, July 5 when a car entered the highway from a side street headed north and struck Mr. Collins. Collins laid in the middle of the turn lane for a long time waiting for an ambulance to come from out of town. He was transported to the Huntsville Hospital where after a medical exam, he was released at about 2 AM. The driver of the car was uninjured and stayed at the scene until after the ambulance had left. Haleyville Police Department investigated the accident.

  • One Killed, Two Injured in Boating Mishap

    A boating accident Friday, July 5, around 2 p.m. near the Corinth boat ramp area on Smith Lake resulted in two injured and one death. According to reports, a boat with 4 adults and 3 children struck a floating log.  Reportedly, a 14-year-old male and a 12-year-old female were airlifted from the scene and one 12-year-old girl was pronounced dead at the scene by a Winston County Deputy Coroner. Names of the victims, all from Mississippi, have not been released. The accident is being investigated by ALEA.