Ka’u opihi picker dies in apparent drowning 04-01-03

PHONE: 939-2520
APRIL 1, 2003


An 18-year-old man apparently drowned Monday afternoon (March 31, 2003) while picking opihi along the shoreline at the end of Red Cinder Road, at about the 59-mile marker off Hawaii Belt Road (Highway 11) in Ka’u.

The victim was identified as Dino M. Kaawa of a Naalehu address.

Responding to a 1:12 p.m. call, Ka’u police and fire units arrived at the scene. Fire helicopters and rescue divers searched for the victim. About 3:15 p.m., divers found his body in about 60 feet of water.

The victim was taken to the Ka’u Community Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 3:55 p.m.

At the time of the accident, the victim had been accompanied by two relatives who said he had been swept out to sea by a large swell.

Police have initiated a standard coroner’s inquest to determine the exact cause of death.

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