The devastated parents of Lukas Orda, who went missing from a cattle ship in the East China Sea, has pleaded with the Australian government not to give up the search for their son.
The Queensland vet and NSW man Will Mainprize were among a crew of 43 on board the Gulf Livestock 1 when it capsized in a storm off the coast Japan last week.
Ulrich Orda says his family was shocked to hear the search for his son had been scaled back by Japan's Coast Guard on Wednesday.
"We are devastated to hear that the search for all missing loved ones was halted," Mr Orda said on Friday.
He begged Australians to help them convince the federal government to resume the search for survivors.
"We are speaking with our hearts in our hands. As a wife of a six-month-old son, as parents, as parents-in-law and family, we thank you not to stop looking for Lucas and the other people missing at sea," a tearful Mr Orda said.
"We extend our plea to all Australians. Please help us so that the government will recommence an extended search to bring them home."
Two survivors have been rescued and another crew member died in hospital after being found floating unconscious on September 4.
Rescue efforts have been hampered by powerful storms in the region.
The ship had sent a distress call on September 2 while it was sailing in rough seas as a typhoon passed the area.
The Gulf Livestock 1 left New Zealand in mid-August carrying 5800 cows to Tangshan on China's eastern coast. New Zealand temporarily suspended new approvals for exporting live cows after the ship's sinking.
The ship stalled when an engine stopped then tipped on its side and sank after being hit by a powerful wave.
The crew included 39 from the Philippines, the two Australian men and two New Zealanders.
Standing alongside his wife Sabine on Friday, Mr Orda thanked the Australian government for its support but asked them not to give up the search for more survivors.
Mr Orda said one of the survivors had informed investigators the crew were all wearing life jackets and readying to leave on life rafts.
"Given this information we are extremely concerned about the search being suspended or called off, especially since the people who were on the vessel were still at sea," Mr Orda said.
Rescuers have seen dozens of cows carcasses, an empty raft, a life vest carrying the ship's name and a bundle of rope floating in the area. They also found traces of fuel in the water - a sign of the ship's submersion.
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