Surfing prodigy Kalani David, 24, dies after suffering seizure while riding waves
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Featured Image Credit: @kalanidavid/Instagram
Surfing prodigy Kalani David has died aged 24 after having a seizure while riding waves in Costa Rica.
David, from Hawaii, was surfing on Saturday (17 September) when he had the fatal seizure.
David, who was also a talented skateboarder, had a condition called Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, according to surfing news site The Inertia, whereby an extra electrical connection causes the heart to periodically beat unusually fast.
The Inertia reported that he nearly lost his life in 2016 following a six-hour seizure, before undergoing surgery the following year to remove extra muscle that had grown on his heart.
In a post on Instagram, photographer and friend Peter King paid tribute.
He wrote: "Oh man. Love you Kalani. Only God knows His timing. Life isn’t easy. Always battling. Always Learning. Heartbreaking News.
"Kalani passed away in Costa Rica today, he had a massive seizure while surfing. He had re connected with family there and was having such a great time.
"I'll always remember your stoke when we'd shoot skate n surf and how much hope you had for you future. God Bless the family and extended family that were always there for you."
In an Instagram story, surfer Kelly Slater said: "Kalani was one of the most talented ... surfer/skater on Earth, constantly pushing the limits every time he was on his feet ... Condolences to the huge community of friends Kalani had coast to coast and across the globe."
David was born and raised on Oahu's North Shore in Hawaii, and when he was 14, he won a gold medal at the ISA World Junior Surfing Championship in Panama.
Photographer Patrick Eichstaedt paid tribute to his talent in a heartfelt Instagram post.
He wrote: "I met you when you were 6 lil brother and knew you were a special human being with some of the most raw talent I had ever seen…I'm so grateful our journey’s crossed… My heart goes out to all the family and the world of friends you had… Seeing you earlier this year was truly special and I will cherish all our memories… my son still wears your hat and we will keep it forever bud! Fly high and stay stoked my man."
If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence, contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677
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