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Search ends for North Carolina man missing after Grand Cayman dive

By Zachary Fagenson

MIAMI (Reuters) - Grand Cayman police on Wednesday called off the search for a North Carolina man who disappeared last weekend after scuba diving near a popular beach on the island's northwest tip.

David Byles, 57, of Pinehurst, North Carolina, surfaced with his wife after a group dive on Sunday with Sunset Divers, part of the Sunset House diving resort in George Town. But he vanished as the couple swam about 100 yards to the boat, police said.

He was not found after three days of searching by specialist divers, Royal Cayman Islands Police Service Marine Command Ian Yearwood said.

"It's clear that we have done as much as we can do at the moment in our attempts to recover David's body and bring some closure to his family," Yearwood said in a statement.

The decision to end the search was discussed with Byles' wife, police said.

Byles' dive jacket, tank and a piece of clothing were found on Monday in 110 to 135 feet of water near the Barracuda Wall off of Seven Mile Beach, according to police.

Shark attacks and jellyfish stings are uncommon at the beach, Yearwood said.

Last May, a 63-year-old U.S. cruise ship passenger had to be rescued while snorkeling off west Grand Cayman and was later pronounced dead.

(Editing by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli)

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