June 16th, 2001, Lohifushi Island Resort, MALDIVES – It is with the deepest regret that O’Neill, Inc and O’Neill Europe announce that on the 15th June 2001, the day before his 23rd birthday, Jay Moriarity died in a free diving accident off the Lohifushi Island resort in the Maldives. Jay drowned after free diving alone as part of his routine training schedule in deep water. A search party recovered his body late Friday night.
Jay Moriarity was born in Georgia, but moved when he was very young to Santa Cruz, California and dedicated his life to the ocean and big wave surfing. He earned his reputation through his amazing big wave performances and his incomparable positive attitude towards life.
On 16th June, a memorial service was held in the water off Lohifishi Island where the congregated surfing community paid respect and tribute to Jay.
More information will be released in accordance with the wishes of Jay’s family.
Click here for Santa Cruz Sentinel Article on tragedy.