By Evie Andreou
Authorities on Tuesday morning found the body of a 65-year-old man who went missing along with his son after they went fishing in the Xylophagou area on Sunday.
His son, Demetris Mastrou, 39, was found dead on Monday. Lambros Mastrou’s body was located in the sea area of Ayia Thekla at around 8.30 am.
A search for the pair was launched on Sunday evening after their family said they failed to return after going fishing at a rocky coastal area in the afternoon.
The search for the father had broken off on Monday at around 4pm due to difficult weather conditions.
The chief of the Joint Rescue Coordination Center (JRCC) Costas Fytiris told the Cyprus News Agency (CNA) that the 65-year-old’s body was found around five kilometres away from Monday’s search grid as sea currents pushed the body towards shore, Fytiris said. That was why the search that resumed early on Tuesday morning covered a bigger radius from where the son’s body was found on Monday.
The 65-year-old’s body, Fytiris said, was located nearer to shore and was picked up by the marine police.
The remains were then transferred by ambulance to a clinic in Ayia Napa. Later in the day the man’s body is to be transferred to the Nicosia General Hospital. The 65-year-old’s post mortem is to be carried out on Thursday. Mastrou was a retired farmer. He had four children including Demetris.
The 65-year-old’s son, was found at around 11 am on Monday by a National Guard frogman who was taking part in the search operation. His body was found close to the point where he had been fishing with his father. Demetris, who worked as an electrician, was married and had two underage children, an eight-year-old girl and a four-year-old boy. He had been unemployed.
His body was transferred to a Dhekelia base hospital where a post-mortem, performed by state pathologist Chara Spiliopoulou, found that he died of asphyxiation as a result of drowning. According to an SBA police spokesman, the post-mortem also found a head injury, likely caused by waves pushing him to the rocks when he dove in the water to save his father.
Authorities had launched the search on Sunday evening after the family of the two men said they failed to return after going fishing at a rocky coastal area in the afternoon. SBA police in Dhekelia were informed on Sunday night at around 11.20pm, that the two men had gone fishing in the Xylophagou area, within SBA territory, but had not returned home.
According to information given to police, the two men contacted their relatives for the last time at around 5.30pm. The family got worried when more hours passed and they failed to return.
Relatives searched the area where they believed the men had set off from and found their car and a fishing rod. They alerted police who in turn requested the assistance of the marine police but an overnight search failed to locate the two men.
The operation was taking place under adverse weather conditions with rain and strong winds, which had prohibited the use of a helicopter. Marine police vessels, firemen, army divers, British bases (SBA) police, and residents of Liopetri and Xylophagou took part in the searches.