The family of a Florida surfer who vanished in the Dominican Republic three years ago hopes the recent spate of mysterious incidents out of the country might draw renewed interest in his case.

Since he vanished without a trace, Darryl Fornatora’s family has received limited information regarding his Jan. 27, 2016, disappearance while on a week-long surfing trip to the Caribbean island, the Palm Beach Post reported.

“I don’t know quite honestly when we get answers, because I’m determined that we will, that that pain will ever go away,” his mother Nancy Fornatora said. “But we want the answers regardless.”

They know the then-45-year-old surfer landed on Jan. 25, 2016, then checked into a villa with a friend, Matthew Rigby, in the coastal town of Caberete.

For five hours, the pair went surfing. Then Fornatora texted his mother to let her know he was out of the water.

“They had surfed for hours that day. It was epic,” his sister, Christina Hendrex, told Fox News at the time. “He was tired. He told my mom, ‘I love you,’”

Darryl and Rigby were set to fly home together on Jan. 31 but the pal cut his trip short three days early.

The day after returning home, Rigby called Darryl’s parents and said he hadn’t heard from the surfer since Jan. 27, according to the family.

“[Rigby] didn’t contact the embassy or police, which I don’t understand,” Hendrex said. “He also took some of Darryl’s things back with him, like his surfboard and his computer.”

Divers, helicopters and planes searched the coast looking for the missing surfer and ruled out drowning since he was an experienced swimmer, according to the Palm Beach Post. His body was never found.

In 2017, the Fornatoras said they haven’t spoken to Rigby since shortly after the disappearance,  and his account only left them with more questions.

He claimed he left because the waves were “flat” — but that Darryl stayed behind to surf more.

“I feel this is a giant jigsaw puzzle and we have all the border pieces — the outline is there — but we’re missing all the pieces that make the picture come together — and Matt holds all of them,” Hendrex told the Palm Beach Post.

The family hopes the recent incidents in the country, including at least seven Americans dying under mysterious circumstances at resorts, will put pressure on authorities to investigate Darryl’s disappearance — and finally bring them closure.

“It seems that there are so many of them right now that focus is on the Dominican Republic,” Nancy Fornatora said. “It’s in their best interests to solve the situations. And that they should want to.”

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here