3 dead after fishing boat capsizes crossing Oregon bay

U.S. Coast Guard Air Facility Newport and Station Yaquina Bay boat crews responded to 3 fishermen in the water after commercial fishing vessel Mary B II capsizes while crossing Yaquina Bay Bar on Jan. 8, 2018. Crews were battling 12 to 14-foot seas. Photo courtesy U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Northwest

NEWPORT, Ore. (KATU) — The U.S. Coast Guard confirmed Wednesday morning that three fishermen who were on boat when it capsized Tuesday night were killed.

The Dungeness crab fishing boat, the Mary B II, capsized while crossing the Yaquina Bay bar Tuesday night in 12- to 14-foot seas, according to the U.S. Coast Guard.

The Coast Guard was able to recover one body, 48-year-old James Lacey, from South Toms River, New Jersey, with a helicopter. He was taken to Pacific Communities Hospital where he was pronounced deceased. A second body, Joshua Porter, 50, from Toledo, Oregon, washed ashore near Nye Beach.

The Mary B II eventually ran aground on the beach near the north side of the Yaquina Bay North Jetty. The boat skipper, Stephen Biernacki, 50, from Barnegat Township, New Jersey, was found deceased with the boat.

"We did everything we could. Unfortunately, it was just a tragic outcome and our hearts and thoughts are with the family and friends of the crew," said Petty Officer Levi Reed with the U.S. Coast Guard.

It was initially reported that the vessel was featured on the show "Deadliest Catch: Dungeon Cove" featured on Discovery, but episode synopsis' don't mention the boat specifically.

The premise of the Discovery show highlights the dangers of crossing the bar with a full load of crab.

The Mary B II reportedly requested a Coast Guard escort and it capsized during the escort.

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