Jeff Cole death: Yachtsman's family thank search teams

Jeff Cole
Image caption Jeff Cole was described as an experienced sailor used to making solo voyages

The family of a missing sailor whose body was found after a search operation have praised the emergency services for "helping to bring closure".

Jeff Cole's empty yacht was found between Boulogne and Calais last month.

The 61-year-old is thought to have set sail from his home town of Weymouth for Swanage, but never arrived.

In a statement, his family said they owed "a debt of immense gratitude to the courage and dedication of the emergency services".

His yacht, Palamina, was last sighted at about 10:30 BST on 21 September off St Aldhelm's Head near Swanage.

Two days later the French coastguard found the 27ft (8m) boat washed ashore in the area of Gris Nez.

A search was carried out by coastguard teams, supported by a helicopter and Dorset Police.

Mr Cole's body was found 11 days later in a cove off Exmouth.

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