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Capt. Charlie Griffin, “Wicked Tuna” star, dies in boating accident

The captain and his Reels of Fortune crew appeared on seasons 2 through 5 of the Nat Geo fishing series.

Capt. Charlie Griffin, a fisherman featured on National Geographic's reality series Wicked Tuna, died in a boating accident on the Outer Banks on March 4.

The official Facebook page for Griffin, who captained the vessel Reels of Fortune, confirmed the news. "It is with the deepest sadness we report that Charlie Griffin and his beloved dog, Leila, have passed away in a boating accident. Please keep family and friends in your thoughts and prayers. We will forever remember Griff!"

Griffin's boat went missing on Sunday evening near the Oregon Inlet, where the vessel is believed to have capsized, the US Coast Guard told Outer Banks Voice. The captain was traveling from Virginia to Wanchese, N.C., with a second occupant aboard the vessel. The search for the second occupant is still underway.

The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission is leading the investigation with assistance from US Fish and Wildlife, National Park Service, NC Marine Fisheries, Dare County Sheriff’s Office, and the US Coast Guard.

The US Coast Guard didn't immediately respond to EW's request for comment.

Griffin and his Reels of Fortune crew appeared on seasons 2 through 5 of Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks (previously titled Wicked Tuna: North vs. South). The series follows fishermen who fish for lucrative bluefin tuna off the coast of North Carolina.

In a joint statement sent to EW, National Geographic and production company Pilgrim Media Group said they were saddened to learn of Griffin's passing following the shipwreck unrelated to the series. "Charlie was known to all as a spirited fisherman with a big heart," they said. "We join Charlie’s family, fellow cast members, and friends in mourning his untimely loss."

This article has been updated to include Nat Geo and Pilgrim Media Group's statement.

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