William Griffith Dies in Rip Currents Off Surf City; High Surf Advisory This Week

The coast has been under a high surf advisory since 7 a.m. today, but a rip current already claimed the life of a man in Huntington Beach.

William Griffith, 26, was swept out to sea late Monday afternoon when he tried to save a friend fighting the rip currents. Griffith's body was recovered by responders aided by helicopters two hours later.

Before that happened, Surf City's Richard Kneebone had been taking in the sunset when he noticed Griffith and the unidentified friend struggling in the surf. Kneebone called 9-1-1 around 5 p.m. and, before lifeguards and paramedics arrived, jumped in after the pair.

Kneebone managed to bring Griffith's friend to shore. Paramedics treated that man before he was rushed to Hoag Hospital, where he was listed in good condition.

Griffith was pronounced dead after his body was fetched around 7 p.m.

There's no rest for the weary: surf as high as 6- to 10-feet is expected to pound SoCal's west-facing beaches today. Despite it feeling like summer outside, frigid ocean waters pose an additional danger.


All-access pass to the top stories, events and offers around town.

  • Top Stories


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >