January 28, 2016

Celebration of Rich Baran's life is planned for Saturday


Friends of Hatteras Island waterman Rich Baran have planned to gather for a celebration of his life on Saturday, Jan. 30, from 5 until 7 p.m. at the Hatteras Village Civic Center. Everyone is invited and asked to bring a potluck dish to share and whatever they want to drink.

Baran, 47, of Frisco, went missing during a hunting trip he made by himself on Saturday, Jan. 23, to his duck blind in the Hatteras Inlet area.  The popular and well-liked waterman, who grew up in New Jersey, had been working on the Hatteras waterfront for some years -- mating for charter and commercial fishing captains and running his own inshore fishing and hunting guide service, based at Hatteras Harbor Marina.

When Baran didn't return from the trip Saturday night, he friends notified the U.S. Coast Guard and began searching themselves in the inlet area.  Friends found his boat with his gear still in it and the anchor line wrapped around the propeller.  They later found his waders near the cable crossing on Hatteras Island spit.

The Coast Guard suspended its search on Sunday afternoon, but friends have continued looking for any trace of Baran -- searching on land and on water and on the oceanside and the soundside of both Hatteras and Ocracoke islands. So far, the effort has been unsuccessful and it's unlikely that the Baran could have survived the cold conditions of the past week.

Some members of Baran's family are on Hatteras Island and plan to attend the Saturday celebration, organizers said.

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