Marcus Biju, a well-known face in North Shore lineups, died on Thursday after he was found unconscious in the water at Ehukai Beach Park. Biju was a bodyboarder, body surfer, photographer, and self-described “barrelholic.”
According to officials, Biju was discovered unresponsive at 7:30 a.m. and pulled from the water by an 18-year-old French surfer named Batiste Baud. “By the time I got to the dude, I had to dive down in the water to get him,” Gaud told SURFER. “After I got on the dude I gave him some breaths. We were getting kind of pounded on the sandbar that’s just next to Pipe and we were in the rip. My board was getting knocked around and we couldn’t get anywhere.”
According to reports, Gaud pulled Biju’s bodyboarding fins from his feet, put them on his own, and pulled Biju to the sand. Despite the efforts of paramedics, Baud, and other beachgoers who performed CPR on the beach, Biju died later at Kahuku Medical Center. Lifeguards weren’t on the scene as they start at 9 a.m. at Ehukai Beach Park.
Biju moved to Hawaii nearly twenty years ago from Brazil and was a dedicated Pipeline surfer. “He was humble and quiet and dedicated his whole life to surfing Pipe,” said friend and photographer Pedro Gomes to Surfline. “He surfed Pipe every day — good or bad — always out in the dark before anyone else.”
“Just to lose a friend like that, out of the blue, is just something that nobody’s ready for it,” said Guilherme Tamega, a friend of Biju’s and a world bodyboarding champ, to Hawaii News Now. “He was always smiling and spreads the aloha all over the island wherever he goes.”
Friends of Biju have started a Gofundme campaign to help Biju’s family. “To show our love for Marcus Biju and his family, we Biju friends have created this Gofundme,” wrote Tamega, “to assist Marcus’s family with expenses while allowing them the opportunity to support each other through this difficult time. We want the family of Marcus in Brazil to know that we are standing behind them through it all.”