A MEMORIAL service for three men who failed to return to their homes after a week-long fishing expedition earlier this month will be held at Lovonivonu Village on Taveuni this week.
The three men — brothers Kali Bautarua, Kitione Bautarua and Qi Satini — were reported missing last weekend.
The captain of the boat, Toma Joape, swam ashore to an island near Qamea in Taveuni and was seen by a group of villagers who were travelling towards the island.
The group alerted police and a search started.
Lovonivonu Village elder Sevanaia Watekini said a search was conducted by the police and other authorities around the island.
"We, the relatives of the three men, have even conducted our own search across the Somosomo Strait but it has been futile," he said.
"It has come to a stage where the authorities have called off the search as nothing positive has come out of it."
Mr Watekini described the three as good men who lived their lives to the fullest.
"Some of us still have to come to terms with the loss of these men and we thank the authorities and everyone that took part in the searches.
"Kali and Qi were still single while Kitione Bautarua is survived by his wife and their four children."