ONOMEA, Hawaii: The scenic Onomea Bay on the Hamakua Coast was the scene of a tragic incident on Saturday.
Hawaii County Police issued this alert over the weekend:
A 43 year old Papaikou man died Saturday (May 5) while reportedly picking opihi in Onomea. At 1:52 p.m., Hilo patrol officers responded to a report of a floating body in the ocean in Onomea, upon arrival Fire personnel was observed with the body on shore. He was subsequently taken to Hilo Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.
The Hawaii County Fire Department detailed the extraction of the victim in this dispatch issued after the incident:
Chopper 1 on scene and recovered the body of an adult male. Landing zone set up near Onomea Bay lookout area. Scene released to HPD for further investigation.
Police say an autopsy will be conducted to determine exact cause of death. The victim’s name is being withheld at this time pending notification of next of kin.
UPDATE: Hawaii County Police have identified the 43-year-old Papaikou man who died on Saturday as Paul Kaaukai. An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday to determine the exact cause of death.