LAGUNA BEACH, California (April 13, 2013) — Dive student Mark Gibbs, 51, of Tustin died Friday afternoon after being found unresponsive in the ocean during while participating in a scuba diving class in Shaw’s Cove just off Cliff Drive, according to a press release issued by the Orange County Sheriff Coroner Department and news reports.
Gibbs was discovered missing just after 11 a.m. when the dive class surfaced and some in the group began screaming for help, according to a press release issued by the Laguna Beach Police Department.
Someone called 911 for help about 11:21 a.m. and a search group consisting of emergency workers from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, US Coast Guard, Newport Beach lifeguards and Orange County Harbor Patrol eventually found Gibbs in full cardiac arrest about 12:40 p.m.
“Rescuers immediately placed him onto a Newport Beach Lifeguard Boat and began CPR efforts,” according to a statement issued by the police department. “The victim was transported to Newport Harbor where he was transferred to an awaiting ambulance and taken to the hospital.”
Gibbs was taken to Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian in Newport Beach where he was pronounced dead at 1:28 p.m., the coroner said.
“Typically scuba divers are required to stay with their ‘dive buddy’ so they are never alone in the water,” said Attorney West Seegmiller. “Police will need to investigate the circumstances surrounding his death to determine what happened.”
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