'Wicked Tuna' Star Charlie Griffin Has Died Following a Boating Accident

Charlie was on the fourth season of 'Wicked Tuna,' and actually managed to win the season with his crew.


Mar. 5 2024, Published 9:54 a.m. ET

Charlie Griffin giving an interview on 'Wicked Tuna.'
Source: National Geographic

As one of the former stars of Wicked Tuna, Capt. Charlie "Griff" Griffin was well known to many fans for his appearances on the show, and his work as a fishing captain in general. More recently, though, Charlie has been in the news not because of his show, but for reasons that are tinged with tragedy.

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Reports suggest that Charlie has died following a boating accident. Following the news, though, many wanted to better understand what had happened to Charlie, and how such an experienced boater ended up in this situation.

Charlie Griffin on his boat during 'Wicked Tuna.'
Source: National Geographic
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What happened to Charlie Griffin?

Around 11:35 p.m. on March 3, 2024, the Coast Guard received a report of two boaters who had gone missing while in transit from Virginia Beach to Wanchese, where the boat was going to be repaired. The last communication with the boat had come several hours beforehand, at approximately 6:15 p.m. The Coast Guard was searching the water and land when Charlie's missing boat was spotted about 70 yards offshore.

Near the boat, the Coast Guard found an "unresponsive person," who turned out to be Charlie, and a dead dog. The person who was with Charlie in the boat is still missing, but the Coast Guard was planning to continue its rescue efforts.

Charlie's boat was found in a stretch of water known as Oregon Inlet, which is known for being one of the choppier and more unpredictable waterways on the eastern seaboard.

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What was Charlie's cause of death?

Foul play isn't currently suspected in Charlie's death, and it seems like he likely died as a result of drowning.

The news of Charlie's death was also announced via his Facebook page.

“It is with the deepest sadness we report that Charlie Griffin and his beloved dog, Leila, have passed away in a boating accident today, March 4,” the post says. “Please keep family and friends in your thoughts and prayers. We will forever remember Griff!”

Source: Facebook/NC Watermen United
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Charlie was on 'Wicked Tuna' several years ago.

Charlie and his crew were in episodes 2–5 of Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks, and were the winners of the show's fourth season. The show follows fishermen who make their living by reeling in bluefin tuna. Boats battle with one another to see who earns the most profit during the season, with the winner being announced at the end.

Following the news of his death, tributes to Charlie poured in from people who knew him throughout the community of Outer Banks. While most may know him from his appearance on Wicked Tuna, it's clear that he was also beloved in his community.

“We had him on the show a couple times when Griff was on Wicked Tuna Outer Banks," local radio host Jody O'Donnell wrote on Facebook.

"Most of what I knew of him was from his old friend and fishing compadre Captain Marty Brill. I’m thinking of Marty and all of Griff’s family and friends during this trying time," they continued.

Although we may never know exactly what happened to Charlie on his boat, we do know that it was a tragedy that many will remember for years to come.

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