ENCINITAS (CBS 8/CNS) - An autopsy will be performed to determine what caused the death of a 61-year-old surfer found on the sand in Encinitas.
The body of Kenneth A. Mann washed up at Swami's State Beach early Friday morning.
Paramedics and sheriff's deputies were sent to the popular point break off the 1300 block of South Coast Highway 101 around 5:10 a.m., after the body of a man in a wetsuit attached to a surfboard by the leash was spotted lying face down in the sand, according to sheriff's officials.
Lifeguards believe Mann was probably surfing Thursday evening when something happened. Maybe an accident, possibly a medical emergency.
A sad reminder to never surf alone.
Kenny Mann, 61, made a name for himself as a surfboard sander beginning in the 1970's. Those who knew him and worked with him said he was beloved in the local surf community, calling him a classic quirky character.
Encinitas resident David Rundell spotted his longtime friend and neighbor Kenny Mann.
"Then I saw him. I'm thinking I might have been the last guy to see Kenny alive. I saw him last night crossing Vulcan. I said there goes Kenny walking to Swami's again. He's a diehard," he said.
Mann was diehard and a local legend. He was a prolific surfboard shaper, working for years for Moonlight Glassing Custom Surfboard Factory.
Rundell said when he caught word of what happened, he had a premonition it may have been Kenny and contacted authorities.
Rundell was able to verify the specific design Mann had with him on his way to Swami's Thursday. It matched the partial board that was found by the body Friday Morning, helping to verify the identity.