Legendary big-wave surfer Marcio Freire passed away on Thursday while tow-surfing Nazare. According to a statement from the National Maritime Authority, the 47-year-old Brazilian was brought to shore by rescuers but was tragically unable to be resuscitated.

The passing of Freire has shaken the big-wave community, who flooded Instagram with tributes to XXL-wave pioneer.

“The Big wave Community of Nazaré is devastated with the passing of a beloved member,” wrote Nic Von Rupp in a post. “Everyone involved in the rescue of Marcio are true heroes. chumbo,fink and Ian did their very best to rescue and bring Marcio to shore, where the lifeguards and emergency teams administered CPR to resuscitate him, but unfortunately with no success.”

“In the wake of a tragedy, shock, grief and sadness is also accompanied by appreciation; I would like take this time to thank all of the Lifeguards, medics, safety personnel as well as the City hall of Nazaré for doing their very best on making our sport a safer place.”

“Long live the legacy of Marcio Freire, a true Maddog, a pioneer that inspired my generation to push further for true essence of surfing. I hope to inspire, like he inspired us.”

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