WEATHER IN LINCOLN COUNTY

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Young Corvallis doctor dies after trying to surf heavy storm waves off Otter Rock

Coast Guard helo
Archive photo

A young doctor died Saturday while surfing near Devils Punchbowl. The Coast Guard sent a rescue craft and a helicopter to rescue Toren Stearns, 30, of Corvallis. A Coast Guard rescue swimmer pulled Stearns back to the beach.

The Coast Guard chopper flew Stearns to PCH in Newport where he was pronounced deceased.

While Stearns surfed, he left his dog on the beach. The Lincoln County Animal Shelter took the dog in while law enforcement contacted Stearn’s family.

At the time Stearns entered the water, it was quite clear that the surf was very rough winter storm surf – high waves, disorganized wave sets and unpredictable currents that accompany such conditions.

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