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Wicked Tuna star Captain Charlie Griffin dies in boating accident

Captain Charlie Griffin, who starred on reality show Wild Tuna: Outer Banks, has died in a boating accident. (Reels Of Fortune Wicked Tuna)
Captain Charlie Griffin, who starred on reality show Wild Tuna: Outer Banks, has died in a boating accident. (Reels Of Fortune Wicked Tuna)

Captain Charlie Griffin, the experienced fisherman who became a fan favourite on the National Geographic reality show Wild Tuna: Outer Banks, has died in a boating accident.

Griffin captained the Reels of Fortune, and the announcement was made on the vessel’s official Facebook page: “It is with the deepest sadness we report that Charlie Griffin and his beloved dog, Leila, have passed away in a boating accident today, March 4th.

“Please keep family and friends in your thoughts and prayers. We will forever remember Griff!”

Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks is a reality series about teams of commercial fishermen battling to bring in lucrative Atlantic bluefin tuna from around the Outer Banks, a line of islands off the coast of North Carolina.

Local news source The Outer Banks Voice reports that on the morning of Monday 4 March, the US Coast Guard received a report of an overdue vessel traveling from Virginia to Wanchese, North Carolina.

According to the Coast Guard, the vessel was subsequently located off Pea Island and the bodies of Charlie Griffin and his dog, both deceased, were recovered onshore near the same location.

The vessel appeared to have capsized, and officials are still searching for a second occupant who was believed to be aboard the vessel.

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.

Griffin was a much-loved member of the Wild Tuna: Outer Banks cast from the show’s second season until the fifth. He led his crew to triumph in the fourth season.

The show was originally called Wicked Tuna: North vs. South but the name was changed at the start of the second season

On Instagram, NC Watermen United, a non-profit that advocates for commercial fishermen in North Carolina, remembered Griffin fondly.

“It is with a sad heart that we write this post. Captain Charlie Griffin met with a tragic boating accident in the early hours of Monday morning off Oregon Inlet.

“We wish to extend our sympathy to the family, friends, and fellow fishermen of this well respected and beloved captain of the Reels of Fortune. ‘Griff’ touched all whom he met including all his fans from his days on Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks.

“‘Griff’ was well loved and will be missed by many. We are forever grateful for the impact he made on our lives.”