Alaska News

2 more bodies found in wreckage of fishing charter boat near Sitka

The bodies of two women were recovered Wednesday from a Sitka fishing charter boat that capsized Sunday night in the deadliest incident in the Alaska charter industry in decades.

The 30-foot Awakin had five people aboard when it capsized in rough seas near Low Island, about 10 miles west of Sitka. Two men remained missing as of Thursday.

In a statement, Sitka-based Kingfisher Charters said the company is “devastated by the loss of the guests and captain of the Awakin.”

Searchers on Sunday night found the body of Maury Agcaoili, 57, of Waipahu, Hawaii, in the water less than 100 yards from the boat.

On Wednesday evening, divers recovered the bodies of sisters Danielle Agcaoili, 53, also of Waipahu, and Brandi Tyau, 56, of Canoga Park, California, from inside the partly sunken vessel, Alaska State Troopers said.

Agcaoili and Tyau were on a trip to Alaska with their husbands and other family members, the Associated Press reported.

Passenger Robert Solis, 61, of Canoga Park, and boat captain Morgan Robidou, 32, of Sitka, were still considered missing.


On Wednesday, the seas were calm enough for divers to enter the vessel while it was still submerged, said troopers spokesman Austin McDaniel.

Previously, the “sea state was too intense to get inside the boat,” said U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Ian Gray.

Efforts to refloat the boat and tow it to Sitka are ongoing, Gray said. The Coast Guard is investigating what led the boat to capsize. Kingfisher Charters is “fully cooperating with the U.S. Coast Guard in its investigation of this tragic event,” the company said in a statement, in hopes “it furnishes answers to the questions as to how it occurred.”

Michelle Theriault Boots

Michelle Theriault Boots is a longtime reporter for the Anchorage Daily News. She focuses on in-depth stories about the intersection of public policy and Alaskans' lives. Before joining the ADN in 2012, she worked at daily newspapers up and down the West Coast and earned a master's degree from the University of Oregon.