Woman found dead in waters off Waimanalo Beach Park identified

Editor’s note: Emergency officials originally said the woman was a tourist from Korea. However, the Honolulu medical examiner later confirmed she was a Honolulu resident.

A Honolulu woman was pronounced dead Saturday afternoon after being pulled from rough surf off Waimanalo.

The medical examiner identified her as Suji Back, 21.

Lifeguards saw two swimmers in distress at Waimanalo Beach Park, at around 3 p.m. about 70 feet offshore.

A male swimmer in his 20s was able to be rescued quickly.

Lifeguards and the Hawaii Fire Department then searched for the second swimmer for more than 30 minutes.

Crews eventually found Back and pronounced her dead at the scene.

“The lady it sounded like she was unconscious for a period of time and no one could find her because its very murky water and pretty hard to search,” said witness Chris Healy.

Witnesses say Back was found a few hundred yards from where she originally went missing.

Ocean Safety adds that there was a strong current in the area and that the east shores of Oahu are under a high surf advisory.

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