North Shore drowning victim identified

Officials recovered the body of a man yesterday who was reported missing late Thursday in the water near Ha‘ena.

Theodore Teichgraber, 37, of Phoenix, Ariz., was found near Kalalau Beach yesterday morning and was later pronounced dead at Wilcox Hospital.

Teichgraber was a first-assistant pilot for U.S. Airways. He had been reported missing around 5:45 p.m. Thursday night.

According to the Kaua‘i Police Department, the caller reported that a man had disappeared while snorkeling at Ke‘e Beach.

Patrol officers were the first to respond to the call. Emergency responders from the fire department and U.S. Coast Guard were then dispatched to initiate a search and rescue that included a helicopter. They conducted an aerial search Thursday night.

At daybreak yesterday, the fire department began their search and rescue operation with lifeguards to conduct a sweep of the area with a Zodiac inflatable, and the U.S. Coast Guard resumed its search.

An Inter-Island Helicopter, Air-1, also was dispatched to the scene, along with a rescue specialist on a Jet Ski.

Teichgraber is the fourth drowning victim on-island this year.

The third was Robert “Kai” Martin, who died in February after a surfing accident at Wainiha Beach. Debra Appell, from California, was the second to drown this year and Dave Allred also of California was the first.

Roughly 80 percent of Kaua‘i’s drowning victims are visitors, according to Dr. Monty Downs.


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