Aaron Gold suffered a massive wipeout and nearly drowned at Cloudbreak, Fiji.
Like many others at Cloudbreak, Gold knew he was surfing a large swell. The Third Reef was pumping, and the 2016 WSL Paddle of the Year winner wanted his share of stoke.
The 34-year-old big wave surfer took off on a big wave, wiped out, and suddenly, he was found floating lifeless by Uri Kurop, who was on a jet ski. Gold was foaming at the mouth, and he was administered intensive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
When he was brought aboard the Tavarua boat, he was still unconscious. The crew revived the Hawaiian one minute after beginning the chest compressions. When the boat touched land, Aaron Gold was given oxygen and transported to the hospital.
"My brother Aaron Gold had a heavy wipeout this morning at Cloudbreak. He got a two-wave hold down and then blacked out unconscious underwater for two mins. He is currently in the hospital checking the amount of water in his lungs," wrote Benji Gold.
"He wouldn't be alive without Uri Kurop grabbing him with the ski or Mark Healey resuscitating him. God bless you guys. Thank you, Lord, for being with Aaron."
Cloudbreak is one of the heaviest left-handers in the world and one of Tavarua's eight main breaks. The Fijian spot has already claimed bones, skulls, and skins.
The World Surf League is holding its first-ever "Strike Missions" at Cloudbreak. Damien Hobgood, Dane Gudauskas, Francisco Porcella, Mark Healey, Mike Seible, and Mike Pietsch were some of the first to score the big swell that hit Fifi.