According to witnesses, Payne was underwater for three waves—approximately 80 seconds—after taking off from a 4-foot wave and hitting the reef below.
After he didn’t resurface, friends say underwater/surf photographer Keoki Saguibo, Big Island surfer Ulu Boi (Jimmy Napeahi) and surfer Mike O’Shaughnessy rushed to rescue Payne. According to sources, Payne was unconscious while in the water.
Once brought to land by Saguibo, Napeahi, and O’Shaughnessy, lifeguards assisted and were able to revive Payne. He was then rushed to the hospital in serious condition
As of publishing, Payne is in stable condition at the hospital but has suffered serious head injuries including a broken jaw. A friend tells Maui Now that Payne was able to recognize his good friend at the hospital and that there are no reports of trauma to the brain or spinal cord.
Shortly after Payne’s horrifying incident this morning, a surfer from Hawaii Kai died after drowning at the surf spot Rocky Point, down the road from Backdoor.
Story contribution via Maui Now.