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Mays, circa 1980; Sea Ox fishing boat

Missing Since 11/13/1980

Missing From Cape Hatteras, North Carolina

Classification Lost/Injured Missing

Sex Male

Race White

Date of Birth Used 07/18/1959 (61)

Age 21 years old

Height and Weight 5'10, 175 pounds

Clothing/Jewelry Description Layered clothing and foul-weather fishing gear. No jewelry.

Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian male. Brown hair, hazel eyes. Mays goes by his middle name, Jeffrey, or the nickname Jeff, and some agencies refer to him as Jeffrey Mays.


The boat's registration number was NC9304 AK and the manufacturer's number was XNA30250M79J. It is very difficult to sink; it has foam flotation that would keep it just beneath the surface, even if it's swamped.

The search for the men began at 9:00 p.m. and lasted for two weeks. No sign of either the boat or the missing men was ever found, in spite of an extensive search by the Coast Guard covering 104,000 square miles of ocean.

Mays graduated from Ligonier High School in 1977 and attended East Carolina University in Greenville, but he quit before graduation and went to work for his father's fishing business, Nunemakers Retail.  Both his best friend and his family agree that the men's disappearances were most likely drug-related; fishermen often sold drugs in the winter when business was slack. No one has been charged in their cases, however.

Mays's mother self-published a book about her son's disappearance, titled Outer Banks Piracy: Where is My Son Jeffrey? She and his best friend believe he may be alive and in Alaska.
Investigating Agency / Department

United States Coast Guard 252-441-0300

Additional missing person information

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