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California surfboard designer dies after being hit by car

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FALLBROOK, Calif. >> Paul Burke, a former competitive surfer who designed surfboards in Southern California for decades, died after being struck by an alleged drunken driver as he rode a bicycle near his home. He was 59.

The California Highway Patrol says Burke was struck and killed May 23 in Fallbrook. The CHP says a 19-year-old woman was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence and vehicular manslaughter.

A Long Beach native, Burke grew up surfing with his five brothers and went on to compete in Hawaii and Australia. In 1979 he founded Burke Surfboards.

The Orange County Register reported Sunday that pro surfer Brad Gerlach, a regular customer, is among those who favored Burke’s innovative four-fin design.

Burke is survived by his wife Laura and three children.

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