MOKPO, South Korea

- Police arrested the captain and two crew members of the South Korean ferry that sank two days ago, leaving more than 270 people missing and 29 people dead, the Yonhap news agency reported early today.

As the last bit of the sunken ferry's hull slipped beneath the water yesterday off southern South Korea, there was a new victim: A vice principal of the high school whose students were among the passengers was found hanged, an apparent suicide.

Identified as Kang Min-Kyu, he was the leader of the students traveling on a school excursion. In his suicide note, Kang said he felt guilty for surviving and wanted to take responsibility for what happened because he had led the trip, according to police.

He asked that his body be cremated and the ashes scattered where the ferry went down.

The Sewol had left the northwestern port of Incheon on Tuesday on an overnight journey to the holiday island of Jeju in the south with 476 people aboard, including 323 students from Danwon High School in Ansan. It capsized within hours of the crew making a distress call to the shore a little before 9 a.m. Wednesday.

Only its dark blue keel jutted out over the surface. But by last night, even that had disappeared, and rescuers set two giant beige buoys to mark the area. Navy divers attached underwater air bags to the 6,852-ton ferry to prevent it from sinking deeper, the Defense Ministry said.