The Sheriff-Coroner’s Office determined the cause of death for Gary Bishop, 53, and Christopher Avila, 49, both found on a boat about 20 miles off Santa Barbara Harbor on June 30, to be carbon monoxide poisoning. The two had been piloting Bishop’s 34-foot Sea Ray Sundowner to Port San Luis Obispo from Ventura when family members reported they could not reach the men on June 29. A responding U.S. Coast Guard helicopter crew found the two men, who both lived in Arroyo Grande, near Point Conception, and another Coast Guard crew towed the boat to Santa Barbara Harbor. The coroner’s toxicology reports on the men, released on August 1, determined their deaths to be accidental.


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