CORONADO, Calif. (KGTV) - Support has been pouring in for the family of a Coronado surf coach and father of six who died Friday.
Stan Searfus, 56, was reported missing in the waters off Sunset Cliffs yesterday morning after his surfboard washed ashore. Lifeguards launched an aerial and water search for the surfer and later found him unconscious.
Searfus was in the water for about an hour before he was found, according to San Diego Fire-Rescue. He died before paramedics were able to bring him to a hospital.
A GoFundMe campaign established following his death has raised more than $100,000 in less than 24 hours - and has continued to climb nearly every minute.
Searfus was a surf coach at Coronado Middle and High schools. Locals have described the father of six as an important part of the community.
Friday, Coronado residents gathered near CHS to remember Searfus:
"[Searfus] advocated for, and encouraged, opportunities for our students to experience and appreciate nature with care and compassion," a statement from Coronado Unified School District Superintendent Karl Mueller read. "Stan's passion for surfing, the ocean, and the environment was infectious-his influence over the youth in our town cannot be overstated."
The founder of Searfus' fundraising effort, Lindsay Maphet, wrote online that he was a selfless person with a passion for teaching.
"He was passionate about the youth in his community and would lend a hand to anyone who needed. His selflessness and joy for life was absolutely tangible by anyone who was in his presence. After meeting him just once, he would call you his friend," Maphet wrote.
According to the fundraiser, Searfus leaves behind his wife, Janice, and six children: Hank, Oskar, Clark, Berkeley, and twins Jake and Josh.