A frantic search for a 15-year veteran lifeguard who went missing while saving a distressed swimmer ends in tragedy when his body is pulled from the waters off of Newport Beach. Mana Rabiee reports.
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A frantic ocean search off the Southern California coast for a missing lifeguard.
Rescuers from Newport Beach form a line in the water, desperately looking for their colleague, 32-year-old Ben Carlson.
The 15-year veteran lifeguard went into the water on Sunday to help a swimmer in distress, when they were hit by a ten-foot swell.
The swimmer made it to shore safely but Carlson went under water.
His body was found after a 90 minute search.
(SOUNDBITE) HELICOPTER NEWS MAN SAYING:
"A group of divers appear to have retrieved something or someone...It does not appear to be good news."
Carlson's body was taken to the hospital.
At nightfall, the Newport Beach Fire Department was mourning the death of one of its own.
SOUNDBITE: NEWPORT BEACH FIRE DEPARTMENT CHIEF SCOTT POSTER SAYING:
"What first responders do in a time like this is they bond, they sit together and talk about the rescue and efforts involved in that rescue. And that's what their doing this evening. The beginning of a healing of losing one of their own. One of their team members. A person they've worked with for many, may years. They're just now learning how they're gonna deal without him."
The death has been deemed a tragic accident.
It's the first time the city of Newport Beach has ever lost a lifeguard, in over a hundred years.
The National Weather Service had issued a coastal warning of dangerous rip currents and high surf along Southern California beaches.
Some beaches saw surf that was up to eight feet high.
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