Last Updated: 1:41 p.m.
Two Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation divers found and recovered the body of 18-year-old Ritchy Volmar just after noon today (Feb. 25) in the waters of the Intracoastal not far from Bings Landing in the Hammock. His family was informed soon afterward.
Authorities had been searching for Volmar since shortly after his friend called 911 Wednesday afternoon, before 3 p.m., to report that they’d been jet skiing together until Volmar fell off and was lost to sight. His friend attempted to find him, but unsuccessfully. The report triggered a nearly 24-hour search that involved the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office, fire rescue teams, FWC and the county’s emergency helicopter.
Volmar’s body was found at 12:47 p.m., a Flagler County Sheriff’s spokesperson said, “in the Intracoastal by the northern trails.”
Volmar had previously been a student at Flagler Palm Coast High School.
The previous story is below.
Search Ongoing for 18 Year Old Who Fell Off Jet Ski in Intracoastal Near Bings Landing
Local and state authorities have been searching for an 18-year-old man, a Flagler County resident, since mid-afternoon Wednesday after he fell off his jet ski in the Intracoastal near Bings Landing.
After suspending the search around 9 p.m. Wednesday, the search resumed this morning, with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s officers in the lead.
The man, known as “Ritchy,” was jet-skiing with a friend. “He fell off with the jet ski and the friend called us to let us know his friend fell off and he had been looking for him,” a Flagler County Sheriff’s spokesperson said. Ritchy is a swimmer, but he was not wearing a life jacket, leading authorities to fear that he may have hurt himself when he fell.
The first call to 911 came in at 2:34 p.m. The Sheriff’s Office dispatched its marine unit and contacted FWC. Soon, St. Johns County’s marine unit joined the search with sonar equipment. The center of the activity was in the area of Bings Landing, the county park, and the Hammock Dunes toll bridge. Fire Flight, the county’s emergency helicopter, joined the search. Flagler County Fire Rescue personnel staged at the park.
“The Coast Guard was notified and given a description just in case they were able to locate anyone,” the spokesperson said. But the search into the night was fruitless. “We’re out there, we have our dive team on standby, we have our marine unit out there,” the sheriff’s spokesperson said.
Chad Weber, an FWC officer, said this morning “we’re still actively searching.”
The Sheriff’s Office signaled its operation to the public on its Facebook page late Wednesday afternoon, asking the public to avoid the area. The posting generated hundreds of replies by residents praying for the young man’s safe return and his family.
Flagler County Fire Flight, the emergency helicopter seen here in a previous training exercise at Bings Landing, was involved in the search for the 18-year-old man who fell off his jet ski near Bings Wednesday afternoon. (© FlaglerLive)