May 30, 2024

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Mikala Jones: Hawaiian pro surfer dies at 44 after surfing accident in Indonesia




CNN
 — 

Hawaiian pro surfer Mikala Jones has died at the age of 44 following an accident while surfing in Indonesia’s Mentawai Islands on Sunday.

Jones was known throughout the surfing world for his mesmerizing videos captured while riding inside of breaking waves, offering a unique first person perspective into the art of tube-riding.

The exact details surrounding his death are unclear.

Jones’ daughter Isabella wrote on Instagram that her “dad got into a bad surfing accident and didn’t make it,” adding that she is “in so much disbelief.”

She paid tribute to her father, sharing photos with him from her childhood and writing, “I wish you were still here with us, you weren’t supposed to leave yet. This is too soon.”

Following Jones’ death, many from the surfing community took to social media to pay their respects.

The apparel company Reef, for which Jones was previously an ambassador, issued a statement in his memory, calling Jones “a contemporary surfing POV content creator ahead of his time” and “arguably one of the most barreled surfers on the planet.”

Surf photographer Brian Bielmann shared a photo of Jones on Instagram, writing, “Our friend Mikala Jones passed away yesterday in The Mentawais while surfing the waves he loved.. I’m so sorry and send prayers to his family.”

The Mentawai Islands in Indonesia’s West Sumatra province are renowned for having some of the world’s greatest surf spots.

Legendary pro surfer Kelly Slater, who has 11 World Champion Surf Titles to his name, commented on Bielmann’s post, writing, “Sobering moment. Maybe nobody lived this life better. Incredible guy and surfer.”

Surf legend Mick Fanning, who has won three world titles, shared a photo of Jones and himself on Instagram, writing, “So shattered to hear the news. Mikala you were one of a kind.”

CNN has reached out to the Indonesian National Police, USA Surfing and the International Surfing Association for comment.