2006-06-02 / Community

Bay Body Believed To Be S.I. Boater

By Brian Magoolaghan

A body that was found floating in Jamaica Bay last weekend hasn't been positively identified but is believed to be a Staten Island boater who fell from his boat and disappeared last month.

The body of a white male was discovered by boaters off Beach 126 Street last Sunday at about 4:20 p.m., police said. The Medical Examiner's office told The Wave shortly before press time that the body is pending identification but was determined to be the victim of a drowning accident.

The body is believed to be that of Michael Bianco, 44, a Staten Island man who kept his 22-foot fishing boat at the Gateway Marina off of Flatbush Avenue. The Daily News reported Monday that unnamed officials said it was Bianco's body that was found. Bianco, a fisherman, had his boat anchored under the Marine Parkway Gil Hodges Bridge on May 17, when witnesses on the shore say they saw him fall overboard, scream for help and disappear.

The NYPD Harbor Unit, National Park Police Marine Unit and the U.S. Coastguard searched Jamaica Bay for Bianco for hours after his disappearance.

Bianco's family could not be reached for comment.

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