Fort Lauderdale

Man Killed, Girlfriend Injured in Ft. Lauderdale Boat Crash: FWC

A man was killed and his girlfriend is still recovering after a tragic boating accident in Fort Lauderdale Saturday evening.

According to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers, 24-year-old Dalton Shirley - also known as Dalton French was sailing with his girlfriend, Justina Coronel, along the Intercoastal Waterway near the Oakland Park Bridge around 8 p.m. Saturday.

Also with them that evening was another man, Austin Lail.

Officials say the boat the three were on was traveling along the waterway side by side with another boat with six people on board. Investigators are unsure what was happening between the two boats, but for unknown reasons, the boat Shirley was on lost control, slamming into a concrete wall. Police say Shirley was thrown from the boat.

"It's unknown how fast the vessel was going, but it would have to be traveling at somewhat of a speed to force an individual to be ejected out of the vessel," said Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue Battalion Chief Stewart Ahearn.

Both Coronel and Lail were injured in the crash and taken to Broward Health Medical Center. Lail was treated and released, while Coronel remains at the hospital in recovery.

Outside Shirley's parent's Hollywood home, a sign reads "please respect our privacy in our time of mourning."

Neighbor Vienna Nesbitt recalled the young man she says she'd watched grow up, and who played with her grandson before the two young men went off to college.

"I'm just said to hear that. A boating accident," Nesbitt says. "I really extend my sympathy to (his mother) Michelle."

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