Holland teen still missing after boat capsized on Lake Michigan

Posted at 10:20 PM, Jun 20, 2016

HOLLAND, Mich. --  The search continues for a 16-year-old Holland boy who went missing on Lake Michigan late Sunday after a boat he was on capsized.

The Coast Guard on Monday announced they were ending search efforts for 16-year-old Riley Hoeksema, but the Ottawa County Sheriff's Department is continuing to search.

Hoeksema's family is distraught, grieving the sudden loss of the teen.  The family's pastor says they're holding onto hope, but they're coming to terms with the reality that Riley is likely gone.

"We are settling into the reality that this is now a search situation and not a rescue situation," said Pastor Jim Liske from the Christ Memorial Church in Holland.

Pastor Liske says he spent time talking with Riley's family Sunday and could see how much they teen means to them.

"We were holding out into the night last night, as the divers and the search teams were out there into the early hours of the morning," Liske said.  "But now, we are hoping and praying that we can have Riley home. So there can be that finality and that the community and Riley's friends and family can move on in a healthy manner.

Riley's family runs the Russ' restaurants in West Michigan.

"His family has three generations in the restaurant business and Riley was going to the fourth," Liske said.

Pastor Liske says the tragic accident can be a lesson others can learn from.

"I think the family would like to express to everyone who is going out on these big majestic bodies of water that it can be treacherous.  It's a great reminder to all of us, not just for teenagers, but for adults too.  That we should practice safety, remembering that there are families waiting for us to come home."

Pastor Liske says the family is beginning to make plans for a memorial service for Riley, and they want to thank first responders, the Coast Guard, and everyone else who has helped search for him.