The following is not about politics, immigration, parking, or Crab Island. We want to bring to your attention a problem with beach safety that has never been addressed in our papers or in our tourist brochures, and we have lived here more than 50 years.
The following letter was first published June 27, 2014, three days after the death of our son, David Jr., (Moose), then living in Virginia.
Attention, all tourists, locals and military personnel. The innocent games in the sand that everyone plays on the beach can turn deadly.
On June 23 our 49-year-old son died on the beach of the Outer Banks, North Carolina. He was raised locally and spent all his growing-up years on the beach, skiing on the bayous, boating in the harbor, swimming in the gulf and board sliding down the Matterhorn. He knew every rule of the water and the sand. That day he was playing with a large group of adults and children at OBX, on a secluded section of beach, digging holes and making tunnels in the sand.
When they were done with their digging and building, he was the first one to go through the tunnel. It collapsed, breaking his back and suffocating him. The sand was very heavy, weighing hundreds of pounds. The beach rescuers took more than 10 minutes to dig him out. He could not be revived.
Please take heed and don't let this happen to anyone in YOUR family.
Today, if you are skeptical, do a search on the internet under "deaths by sand collapse.” In print, our tourist development director and beach safety chief have never even mentioned the possibility. Our own newspaper publishes pictures of people buried in the sand up to their necks smiling all the way. It can happen at any age, on any beach. Mother Nature controls the sand and the sea. Not us.
Darlene and Dave Fraser,