Tropical Storm Karen halts search for missing American woman in the Virgin Islands

Sarah Ladd, Louisville Courier Journal

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The search for a Kentucky woman missing since last week from St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands was suspended Tuesday as Tropical Storm Karen nears the islands.

The Virgin Islands National Park announced Sunday that the Louisville woman, Lucy Schuhmann, 48, has been missing in St. John since Sept. 19. 

A statement from the national park said Schuhmann was reported missing from an Airbnb she was staying in Coral on St. John. A park spokesperson said Wednesday the initial report was incorrect: Schuhmann was staying at an unnamed vacation rental, not an Airbnb. 

"Ms. Schuhmann had not checked out as scheduled, her belongings were in her room, and her rental jeep was subsequently found at the Salt Pond parking area in Virgin Islands National Park," the post said. 

Post by virginislandsNPS.

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The U.S. Coast Guard, St. John Rescue, Virgin Islands police, park officials and volunteers conducted ground and water searches for her, but Tropical Storm Karen's approach hindered them. 

"Weather conditions Tuesday morning are overcast and rainy, and expected to deteriorate as Tropical Storm Karen nears," the park posted Tuesday on Facebook. "A Tropical Storm Warning has been issued for the Virgin Islands, and search efforts are being suspended until the storm passes and conditions allow the effort to safely continue."

Monday, scuba divers, snorkelers and a Coast Guard helicopter searched the waters off the south shore of St. John for Schuhmann but found no sign of the missing woman.

Schuhmann's family requested privacy, the park said. Anyone with information is asked to call 866-995-8467 and choose option two. 

Contributing: Billy Kobin

Follow Sarah Ladd on Twitter: @ladd_sarah.

This article originally appeared on Louisville Courier Journal: Lucy Schuhmann of Louisville: Search halted for Tropical Storm Karen