North Shore drowning is second of 2007

PRINCEVILLE — A California visitor who drowned Monday on the North Shore marks the second death on Kaua‘i beaches this year.

Debra Appell, 53, of Santa Maria, Calif., was snorkeling at “Hideaways” Beach near the Princeville Hotel at around 4 p.m. when she was swept out by the strong current and dangerous surf, county public information officer Mary Daubert said Tuesday.

Seeing his wife in distress, Appell’s husband swam out and brought her to shore.

Bystanders and medical personnel performed CPR on Appell at the scene, but were not able to resuscitate her, Daubert said.

She was transported to Wilcox Memorial Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

North Shore resident Robert “Kai” Martin, 23, died last week after a surfing accident at Wainiha Beach.

Large ocean swells and strong winds have made Kaua‘i’s North Shore even more treacherous than usual this time of year, and several others have experienced close calls.

On Saturday, Dave Allred, a visitor from California, rescued a Canadian snorkeler swept out by strong currents at ‘Anini Beach. On Jan. 9, there were seven separate rescues on North Shore beaches, including one in which Kilauea resident Daniel Saylor braved 20-foot waves at Ke‘e to retrieve a swimmer in distress just two weeks after getting out of a wheelchair (see A11). Saylor was on crutches at the time after having both of his shattered heels surgically repaired last fall.

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