Family of missing fisherman plans Newhaven memorial

Darren Brown, 37, has been missing since going overboard in the English Channel last month. SUS-160726-140608001
Darren Brown, 37, has been missing since going overboard in the English Channel last month. SUS-160726-140608001

The family of a fisherman who has been missing at sea for more than six weeks are hoping to raise money for a memorial in Newhaven Harbour.

An experienced fisherman Darren Brown, 37, from Newhaven has been missing since going overboard while working in the English Channel last month.

As no body has been recovered, his family say they now want to raise enough money for a permanent memorial to Mark in Newhaven Harbour.

Writing on the memorial fund’s Justgiving page, Darren’s brother Mark Brown said: “If we go over the target or don’t need all the donation money, I will pass the money on to lifeboat and coastguard and charities as they tried so hard to find my brother.

“Also to the Fishermen’s Mission charity who helped support my family and my brother’s crew. They are not a well known charity outside of the fishing community, but the work they do needs to be recognised.”

As well as raising donations from friends and well-wishers, 36-year-old factory worker Mark plans to work shifts on fishing ships for free as thanks to the fishing community.

“It will be a emotional and physical challenge for me. I’m hoping to take my sea safety course as soon as I’ve got some time off work. All the money will go into the memorial fund or to the Fishermen’s Mission.”

Darren was reported overboard from the 10m fishing vessel Our Sarah Jane in The English Channel on Thursday, June 9.

Mark says his brother – a fisherman with more than 22-years of experience working at sea – had jumped into the water after a line became tangled around his vessel’s propeller.

Mark said: “He had been doing since he was 15-years-old. He had worked all over the place, in the South and North Sea.

“He was fit and knew the risk of what he was doing. He had done the same thing two weeks prior to the day he got lost; on a different day with different conditions where he got lucky. I know it was something he had done in the past and was confident he could do it.”

Mark says Darren is thought to have lost consciousness after jumping into the water and quickly drifted away from his boat and crew. They reported him missing and began the search immediately.

Lifeboat crews, the Coastguard helicopter as well as numerous fishing vessels and professional mariners took part in the search before it was stood down.

The UK’s Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) has opened a file on the circumstances of the incident.

For more information about Mark Brown’s fundraising efforts and search for Fishingforthemission on Facebook.

To donate to their memorial fund visit https://crowdfunding.justgiving.com/mark-brown-1?utm_campaign=post-pledge-mobile&utm_content=mark-brown-1&utm_medium=socpledgemobile&utm_source=facebook&utm_term=3RGkrEzRg.

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