Name: Harold Jeffrey Mays
Case Classification: Endangered Missing
Missing Since: November 13, 1980
Location Last Seen: Cape Hatteras, Dare County, North Carolina
Date of Birth: July 18, 1959
Age: 21 years old
Weight: 175 lbs.
Hair Color: Brown
Eye Color: Hazel
Nickname/Alias: Went by middle name - Jeffrey or Jeff
Distinguishing Marks/Features: Unknown
Fingerprints: Not Available
Clothing: Would have been dressed for off-shore ocean fishing in November. Likely layered clothing and foul weather maritime style gear.
Additional Personal Items: Unknown
JeffreyMays was last seen in a boat 16 miles off the coast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina on November 13, 1980. Jeffrey and Ted Wall, were last seen about 13.30 p.m. on Thursday, November 13, 1980, about 16 miles southeast of the inlet. A commercial fisherman from Hatteras told the Coast Guard he helped the two repair the engine of Jeffrey's 23-foot boat, the Sea Ox.
The search for the missing men and boat began about 21.00 that evening and continued for two weeks. Coast Guard boats, Navy, Marine, Air Force and Coast Guard helicopters were used to cover more than 211,000 miles of ocean.
Jeffrey's boat, the Sea Ox, was considered unsinkable. The Sea Ox boats are filled with foam flotation that can keep them just under the surface even when swamped. The lost boat had a 280-horsepower engine. Authorities haven't found anything from the boat, which is unusual.
Friends and family of Mays doesn't believe Jeffrey is dead. According to the family, the commercial fishermen had started selling drugs. Jeff was hanging out with Ted Wall, and they think Ted was owing some people money.
There has been several sightings, but none has been substantiated. The family thinks he may be living in Alaska.
Jefferey's mother, Shirley Mays, has committed her life to finding Jeffrey. She has written a book, "Outer Banks Piracy, Where Is My Son Jeffrey?" She is hoping the book will open up more doors in her search for her son.
Agency Name: United States Coast Guard: Fifth District
Agency Contact Person: N/A
Agency Phone Number: 804-398-6237
Agency E-Mail: N/A
Agency Case Number: District 5 Case 0093 - 13
NCIC Case Number: Unknown
NamUs Case Number: 14742
PittsburghLIVE.com - 11/7/04
Added: 11/29/05; Last Updated: 12/1/17
Questions or comments? Please contact appropriate member of the Area Team
** Listed information is from the time of disappearance.