A teenage pro surfer died Tuesday while trying to surf in the large swells generated by Hurricane Irma, according to media reports.
Zander Venezia of Barbados was among a group of pro surfers on the island who set out “to catch the mega-swell currently being generated by Hurricane Irma,” according to Surfline.com, which first reported Venezia’s death. Venezia was 16.
“Horrible news,” original Bajan pro-turned-surf instructor Alan Burke told Surfline. “I feel empty, we are in shambles over here. I wasn’t there [at the spot], but my wife has been with the Venezia family at the hospital.”
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Venezia was surfing off the east coast of the island when he was swept into the rocky shallows, Surfline reported. He reportedly suffered a fatal neck injury.
Barbados avoided the worst of Irma, according to Barbados Today, but on the same day of Venezia’s death, the outlet reported a home on Barbados had its roof ripped off by winds from Irma.
An outpouring of support has been shared on social media for the teen surfer.