Big Island Police Initiate Coroners Inquest Investigation on Body Found of Man Who Was Swept Out to Sea

Big Island police have initiated a coroner’s inquest investigation in connection with a 31-year-old man whose body was found Wednesday morning after he was swept out to sea Tuesday afternoon.

Maku'u Drive

The victim has been identified as Charles Lyon of Keaʻau.

At 6:32 p.m. Tuesday (February 5) Puna Patrol officers and Fire Department personnel responded to a possible drowning off Makuʻu Drive in Paradise Park. Upon arrival, officers learned that the victim had been washed out to sea while fishing with his brother.

The case was originally classified as a missing persons.

Fire Department and Coast Guard personnel searched for the missing man but were unable to locate him initially and the search was suspended due to nightfall and weather conditions.

The search resumed at first light Wednesday (February 6) morning and the victim’s body was soon located by Hawaiʻi Fire Department personnel.

An autopsy has been ordered to determine the exact cause of death.

FROM THE COAST GUARD:

The body of a man missing in the ocean near Paradise Park, on the Big Island, was located by first responders at 7 a.m. Wednesday.

The Coast Guard was notified Wednesday that the Hawaii County Fire Department located the body of Charles Lyon who reportedly fell into the sea Tuesday.

“This is a terrible loss and we offer our deepest sympathies to the Lyon family during this difficult time,” said Cmdr. Steven Wheeler, Sector Honolulu search and rescue mission coordinator.

Coast Guard watchstanders at the Sector Honolulu command center were notified of a person in the water near Paradise Park, approximately 10 miles south of Hilo, on Tuesday evening. The crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Kiska, a 110-foot cutter homeported in Hilo, and an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Air Station Barbers Point, were launched to search for Lyon at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. The Kiska crew searched throughout the night, while the Dolphin crew conducted evening and early morning searches.

Lyon was reportedly walking along a bluff approximately 20 feet above the water when he fell into the ocean.

Hawaii’s high surf conditions and rocky coastlines can be treacherous and the Coast Guard recommends individuals use extreme care when hiking, check local weather and sea conditions and heed all warnings from local authorities and posted signs.

For more information on this case contact Lt. Kevin Cooper, the Sector Honolulu public affairs officer, at 808-842-2657. To contact the Hawaii County Fire Department dispatch, dial 808-961-8336.

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