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Woman who died jumping off Spitting Caves identified

By Gregg K. Kakesako

LAST UPDATED: 02:18 p.m. HST, Jun 10, 2014

<br />2013 June 23 - CTY - Two young men and a young woman jumped off the cliff at Spitting Caves on Sunday just before Ocean Safety officials gathered at the spot presented Guillermo Arrubla, 36, a visitor from Arizona, with an award for rescuing a woman who was pulled out to sea Saturday after jumping off the same cliff. HSA photo by Sarah Zoellick&#13;&#13;hawaii kai east oahu ocean rescue&#13;The area is located at the end of Lumahai St. In the Portlock area.<br />

A second Navy sailor has died within the past two months after jumping into the ocean at the Spitting Caves, a popular cliff-jumping spot, near Portlock.

The Medical Examiner's office identified the second victim as Shannon Nunez, a 22-year-old enlisted sailor from Patrol Squadron (VP-4) based at Marine Corps Base Hawaii at Kaneohe Bay.

Nunez was swimming with friends Sunday at the scenic spot at the end of Lumahai Street around 1:30 p.m. when she got into trouble after jumping 60 feet from the ledge and got carried away by the strong currents.

Honolulu firefighters and Ocean Safety personnel located the victim and her brought back to shore at Maunalua Bay, where she was pronounced dead by paramedics. An autopsy will be conducted to determine cause of death

Nunez, a Whittier, Calif. native, was serving as a petty officer and an aircraft mechanic, the Navy said in a statement. She reported to VP-4 in February. Previously, she was stationed at VP-30 in Jacksonville, Fla., from 2012 to 2014, and attended training at several commands in Pensacola, Fla. and Great Lakes, Ill.

"This is a tragic loss for our Navy family," said Rear Adm. Rick Williams, commander of Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific. "This tragedy reminds each of us of the need to heighten awareness and practice greater safety on and off duty."

Cmdr. Brett Thompson, commanding officer of VP-4, said, "Petty Officer Nunez's loss is a devastating impact to the Skinny Dragon ohana," He added, "We share deeply in her family's grief and extend our prayers and hearts to them."

Williams said, "Hawaii is a beautiful and special place, but there are inherent dangers in the surf, cliffs and trails." He continued, "I've called for service members and their families to refocus and practice 'safety first' -- especially during the summer but throughout the year. We need to do everything we can to prevent another loss like this."

On April 5, Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Gregory Spillman, of Alexandria, Pa., was sept out to  sea after jumping into the ocean at the Spitting Caves.

Spillman enlisted in the Navy in 2012. He attended Hospital Corpsman "A" School at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, in January 2013 and the Field Medical Training Battalion at Camp Pendleton, Calif.

He was assigned to the clinic at Joint Base Pearl Harbor Hickam in March 2013.

His wife, an active duty sailor, is stationed at Great Lakes, Ill.

Spitting Caves is a popular spot for cliff-jumping in the Portlock. When waves that roll into the cave and hit the back wall, whitewater is "spit" back out of the mouth of the cave.

Other reported Spitting Caves drownings have included Daniel Lowe, 27,  of California, on October 2012; Glenn Cooke, 45, of Honolulu, on June 2010; Navy Operations Specialist 3rd Class Zachary Ryan Johnson, 21, Windsor, Colo., and assigned to USS Lake Erie, on March 2006; Stephen LeBlanc, 29, of West Wego, La., on July 2005; and Daren Kataoka, 20, of Kapahulu, on November 2000.

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itsok wrote:
respect the ocean...
on June 10,2014 | 08:10AM
Kapalua wrote:
No panic
on June 10,2014 | 09:08AM
8082062424 wrote:
got to know your limits . just because you see others doing it does not mean it easy to do. sad.
on June 10,2014 | 09:45AM
keola2011 wrote:
Don't underestimate the ocean.
on June 10,2014 | 10:20AM
higirlinlv wrote:
Now her parents are going to sue the state because nobody told her not to do something stupid. Just like the parents of the boy who stuck his head over blowhole when it blew. Anybody know whatever became of that case?
on June 10,2014 | 11:00AM
juscasting wrote:
I think it was his B-hind not his head.
on June 10,2014 | 11:58AM
cojef wrote:
Bad mana spirits around cliffs.
on June 10,2014 | 12:07PM
sak wrote:
"Darwin Awards" Google it!
on June 10,2014 | 02:19PM
false wrote:
No, the spirits are good. I IQ for the environment is non existent. Ocean waves and currents are just as daunting as snow capped mountains, crevasses, and avalanche. Power of nature cannot be estimated or assumed. Expect that you will be surprised. Do you want to be surprised? Then it's an addiction to the adrenalin rush. And that's what draws them there.
on June 10,2014 | 02:26PM
KWAY wrote:
Always stay calm, move away from the shoreline, tread water until help can get to you. Of course these are ocean tenants the ignorant never bother to learn before jumping off 60 foot cliffs .... into the ocean. She could have easily survivied this if she didnt panic, and the people on shore coached her.
on June 10,2014 | 03:17PM
WatsIt2u wrote:
So sad...Get warning signs or what? If no moa, den donʻt you tink dey should post several BIG kine ova dea? Make um in english, japanese and spanish. But, if already get den, how sad when people no like pay attention...condolences to da ʻohana
on June 11,2014 | 08:59AM
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