Captain Donald Lawson on Sept. 9, 2022.

Captain Donald Lawson on Sept. 9, 2022. (Kim Hairston/The Baltimore Sun/TNS)

(Tribune News Service) — Mexican authorities are no longer actively searching for Donald Lawson, the Baltimore sailor who went missing in the Pacific Ocean last month.

The Mexican Rescue Coordination Center had spearheaded the search for Lawson, but the authorities no longer consider the search for him to be an “active” one, according to a statement Wednesday from Donald Lawson’s wife, Jacqueline “Tori” Lawson. Instead, the MRCC is “on alert” for signs of Lawson.

“I haven’t given up, and neither have they,” Tori Lawson said in the statement.

Donald Lawson, a Baltimore native who aspired to set speed records aboard his ORMA 60, a class of fast but dangerous trimarans, was last heard from July 12 while in the Pacific Ocean, about 300 miles from Acapulco, Mexico. He’d been planning to sail through the Panama Canal and to Baltimore, where he expected to begin a circumnavigation attempt in October. However, he ran into engine problems and turned around to head back to Acapulco.

His last known location was recorded by satellite on July 13. Tori Lawson then notified the U.S. Coast Guard on July 21 that her husband was missing.

Mexican authorities, with support from the U.S. Coast Guard, located his trimaran, which he named Defiant, capsized in the Pacific Ocean in late July. His life raft was not found aboard, and although authorities continued to search the area for signs of him, they did not find him or his life raft.

Tori Lawson visited Acapulco and met with Mexican authorities from Aug. 7 to 12. On Aug. 8, she was informed that the authorities had switched the status of their search for Lawson from “active” to “on alert.”

“It was clear to me that the Mexican Navy and MRCC truly went above and beyond in their efforts to find my husband Donald and DEFIANT’S missing life raft,” Tori Lawson said in the statement. “I am eternally grateful for their tremendous hard work and dedication as their search continued for well over a week.”

©2023 Baltimore Sun.


Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign up to receive a daily email of today's top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign Up Now