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.