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Ricardo dos Santos dies from gunshot injuries

Ricardo dos Santos © Waves Brazil & Billabong




Surfing World mourns the loss of Ricardo dos Santos

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 20 January, 2015 - Sao Joseph, Brazil - Brazilian media is reporting that Ricardo dos Santos has died in a local hospital where he was last listed in critical condition at St Joseph’s Hospital in Santa Catarina. Ricardo was shot Monday morning after an altercation in Praia da Guarda do Embaú, near Palhoca. 

In the hospital Dos Santos had undergone four surgeries and had required 100 units of blood, but his injuries were too severe for him to recover. Dr. William Genovez of St. Joseph’s said Ricardo had multiple injuries in the abdomen, chest, and liver with very serious bleeding.

Reports are varied as to how Dos Santos got shot. One says that Ricardo told a group of men to stop using drugs out in the open at the beach while another said he was working on his house and told two men to stop doing drugs and playing loud music nearby. An off-duty police officer has been arrested over the murder but claims he was acting in self-defence, according to Brazilian news website Globo.

Ricardo is remembered as the charging goofy foot who surfed heavy spots like Pipeline, Arica and Teahupo’o with abandon and claimed the Billabong Pro Tahiti trials in 2012. He was 24 years old.

The surfing community has put out a remarkable social media call of well-wishes and prayers to Dos Santos and his family. 

Billabong, Ricardo's sponsor, has release this statement:

Ricardo was our team rider and dear friend, and an inspiration to all who knew him. Ricardo Dos Santos was also a legend in the surf world, as well as a fearless charger whose enthusiasm for pushing the limits ignite joy and motivation in his partners.

More importantly, Ricardo was a loving brother, son, friend, and grandson. When not traveling the globe in search of giant barrels, Ricardo spent time at home helping around the house and surfing with local groms.

Ricardo was also a proud Brazilian who supported his local community. His stoke for his homeland could be felt even as he traveled the globe, telling stories of his time at home with close friends.

While we mourn this tragedy, we must remember to celebrate and honor Ricardo’s incredible life, and hope it influences the next generation to live a life full of hard work, enthusiasm, and generosity.

Some of Ricardo’s greatest accomplishments include his fearless appearance in the 2012 Billabong Pro Tahiti Trials for which he took home the Andy Irons Forever Inspiration Award, his campaign during the 2012 – 2013 North Shore season for which he won the Wave of the Winter Award presented by Oakley and Surfline, and a vast array of barrel filled covers. But no accomplishment was bigger than the warmth he shared when he engaged in conversation. Few people can light up a room the way Ricardo did.

“Our Ricardo is gone. He lived so much in his 24 years. It is a very hard time for us right now. We believe that there are better barrels where Ricardo is going and that he will be there getting barrels with Andy Irons,” Ricardo’s family said moments after his passing. “We want to say thank you to everyone for all of the support. Thanks for all of the opportunity for his life and career. Ricardo was so grateful for everything and for everyone.”

At this time we send our love, thoughts, and prayers to the Dos Santos family and the whole community of Brazil. The Billabong Family has lost a dear friend.




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