Lee Dingle, Raleigh, North Carolina ‘model’ father of six dies after ‘freak wave’ at beach breaks his neck while playing with his kids along shallow waters at Oak Island.
A North Carolina father of six died has died after being struck by an ‘intense wave’ that knocked him to the ground and broke his neck, according to his wife.
Lee Dingle, 37, of Raleigh was playing in shallow waters along the beach at Oak Island with some of his children on Friday when he was hit by a powerful wave in a ‘freak accident,’ Shannon Dingle, posted on Twitter.
‘Lee was playing on the beach with three of our kids yesterday, and an intense wave hit him just right to slam his head into the sand and break his neck,’ Shannon wrote.
After breaking his neck, the 37-year-old’s throat swelled, depriving his brain of oxygen.
‘Some heroes — including our kids — tried to save him, but it wouldn’t have mattered what they did,’ Shannon Dingle wrote. ‘His body couldn’t recover from the initial injury.’
Told April Schweitzer, a friend of the Dingles, via WRAL, ‘There was just too much swelling to do anything for him.’
‘How he saw each child for who they were uniquely and just supported them in that and encouraged them and was always there for them,’ she said. ‘But I feel like anyone who knew him was a better person from their interactions with him.’
My partner, my love, and my home died today after a freak accident. Lee was playing on the beach with three of our kids yesterday, and an intense wave hit him just right to slam his head into the sand and break his neck. 1/
— Shannon Dingle (@ShannonDingle) July 20, 2019
Raleigh dad had just been promoted to partner 3 weeks ago:
Dingle was the president of Atlas Engineering in Raleigh and had worked for the company for 15 years. The engineering firm promoted Dingle to partner just three weeks ago, ABC11 reported.
‘With a focus on personal interaction with clients to ensure the highest level of quality, Lee has extensive experience with the analysis of existing structures, repair design, upgrade/reinforcement details, platforms, cranes/hoists, materials handling systems, and concrete repairs,’ according to a bio on the company’s website. ‘Lee’s private sector clients include manufacturing, research, and pharmaceutical companies.’
Sharon Dingle said she met Lee when she was 18 and he was 19, with the pair having been together ever since.
‘I wasn’t supposed to be saying goodbye at 37,’ Shannon posted. ‘I don’t know how to be a grown up without him, but I’ll learn. I just wish I didn’t have to.’
Lee Dingle Raleigh father was a model dad who’d adopted children from humanitarian crises and severe health issues:
Lee Dingle is survived by his wife and six children by birth and adoption.
A GoFundMe page soliciting money for the family had raised more than $118,000 as of Sunday evening, EST.
Four of the Dingles’ children are adopted — three are siblings from Uganda, and Zoe, who has cerebral palsy, is from Taiwan, according to the Archibald Project, which advocates for orphans worldwide.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Ocean Service warns of the dangers of shorebreaks, an ocean condition when waves break directly on the shore. Waves that are small and high can be “unpredictable and dangerous,” and typically form where this is a rapid transition from deep to shallow water
‘The power of a shorebreak can cause injuries to extremities and the cervical spine. Spinal cord injuries most often occur when diving headfirst into the water or being tumbled in the waves by the force of the waves,’ the agency states. ‘Be sure to ask a lifeguard about the wave conditions before going into the water.’