ST. MARTIN PARISH (NBC33) — The search for 28 year old firefighter Jacob Lewis was suspended just before 5:00 on Thursday as the light faded from the sky, crews were forced to pack in their search.
Throughout the day there were at least five boats, a dive team and cadaver dogs scouring the area at all times. The search was mainly limited to the landing area where Lewis was last seen by his wife before he went under the water. NBC33 spoke with Baton Rouge Fire Chief Ed Smith, he mentioned several firefighters from his department were out Thursday helping with the search. He said the whole search effort was harder for the department because Lewis is one of their own.
“Unfortunately we don't have a lot of information. I've been out here since I heard about it. But they're a strong group of guys and we've got several of them out here searching. The fire department is going to band together and find strength within itself,” Smith said.
Chief Smith told NBC33 that Lewis has been with the department for four years and described him as a star employee.
"Very energetic, dynamic guy. Hard worker. Just the type of employee every chief would like to have. And he fulfilled his job daily," Smith added.
Lewis is still considered missing. The last time he was seen was around 3:00 Wednesday afternoon. He was reportedly out scouting for crawfish trap spots with his wife. The two were loading the boat back on to their truck, when she noticed he wasn’t above the water anymore. She said he then popped back up and yelled for help, that was the last time he was seen.
The search will start again at first light Friday.