KEALAKEKUA BAY, HAWAII (HawaiiNewsNow) - News of the teenager - swept out to sea off the Big Island - has spread across the country and even internationally.
Hawaii County Fire and Rescue crews are still out searching for 15 year old Tyler Madoff. It's been more than two days since Tyler went missing. His father is reportedly in Hawaii now, and the family has hired a couple of private boat operators to help in the search.
Tyler had just started his summer adventure in Hawaii this week - with the teen travel program, Bold Earth. A counselors' blog, dated July 2nd, describes how excited the kids were to surf and watch the sunset. Two days later, during a hike off the rocky shoreline of Kealakekua bay, a freak set of high waves swept Tyler and another boy out into the ocean depths.
The U.S. Coast Guard has since pulled its cutter and crew from the scene, but HFD rescuers launched again, at first light Friday, to look for Tyler. "We have four divers in the water at a time," says West Hawaii battalion chief, Reuben Chun. "We have, I believe, nine personnel who are on scene (on the water)".
HFD's helicopter crew is also blanketing the area from above. Its policy calls for a three-day search before suspending operations. So, if he's still missing by nightfall Friday, they'll be back on Saturday.
Chun tries to stay hopeful but realistic. "It's not over 'til it's over, but the more time goes by, the chance of rescue diminishes, and it looks more like a recovery as time goes by."
As crews keep looking, loved ones in White Plains, New York, keep the faith. In a statement, his family says, "We are tremendously grateful for the support and prayers of our community but at this time, request our privacy during this difficult time."
Social media sites, like Twitter, include many prayers and hopes for a miracle for the Scarsdale High School junior - who's described as "tough" and "a fighter".
We've also checked on the other 15 year old boy who was swept away on those same waves with Tyler. The Miami, Florida boy was rescued and remains in critical condition at the Queen's Medical Center.