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170-foot artificial reef to honor Austin & Perry, Deputy Fernandez Jones, Jaden Jones, Willis Bell

Posted at 1:53 PM, Jun 22, 2016

A new 170-foot artificial reef off the coast of Palm Beach County will honor the lives of five local residents who lost their lives in the last year to boating accidents.       

On June 27, Palm Beach County Commissioners will hold a dedication ceremony at Manatee Lagoon, an FPL Eco-Discovery Center near the Port of Palm Beach.

The ceremony will include speakers and a plaque unveiling.

The artificial reef is a 170-foot supply ship, the M/V Ana Cecilia, that was recently confiscated by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

The ship will be scuttled this summer 1.25 miles off the Lake Worth Inlet in 85 feet of water, where it will create marine habitat.

The county says this is the 45th ship that has become an artificial reef in the county.

Plaques will be affixed to the ship honoring Perry Cohen, Austin Stephanos, Palm Beach County Deputy Fernandez Jones, his 9-year-old son, Jaden, and Willis Bell.

Austin and Perry were lost at sea after leaving from the Jupiter Inlet on July 24, 2015.  Their boat was found off the coast of Bermuda on March 18.

Fernandez Jones, Jaden and Willis Bell of Port St. Lucie drowned in April during a boating trip off Martin County.