Missing gear hindering dive death investigation

The investigation into the deaths of two Carson City teens who died while scuba diving in Monterey last weekend has been hindered by their missing gear.

Monterey County Sheriff's Detective Kevin Gardepie said this morning that divers have been searching since Saturday for the equipment worn by Stephen Anderson 16, and Keegan Aiazzi, 17, when they took to the water for the second time on Saturday morning from a chartered dive boat.

When the boys didn't surface with their group of about 17 others, divers on the Monterey Express, members of the Monterey County Fire Department and the U.S. Coast Guard began searching.

Keegan and Stephen were found by the charter boat divers on the ocean floor in close proximity to each other. Attempts to resuscitate them were unsuccessful.

"We are having difficulty finding the dive gear on the ocean floor.," said Gardepie, noting visibility and underwater current was making the search difficult. "Finding them is critical to my investigation"

It's not clear if the boys themselves lost or dumped their gear, or if rescuers released the gear to surface with them.

A memorial, planned tonight on the Carson High School football field from 7-10 p.m., was organized by the boys' classmates.

Their deaths have rocked the high school and on Monday administrators allowed students to openly grieve about the boys by spending their time at a memorial set up on Stephen and Keegan's parking spaces at the school.

Keegan's father Jason Aiazzi said Wednesday, "They were dive buddies and they were best friends. The odd thing is they had spots right next to each other at school and they both had the same middle name - James."

Said Stephen's father Chris Anderson, who'd accompanied the boys to Monterey, "The last thing I said to them before they got on the boat was, 'Now you guys, stick together.' And they did."


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