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RIP Sumo Sato

Huntington Beach's surfing pastor passes away after battle with cancer.

#RIP Sumo Sato, the legendary Huntington Beach surfing pastor who dedicated his life to helping others, succumbed to colon cancer at the age of 55 (according to the OCRegister.) A longtime fixture in Huntington Beach, Sumo was inducted into the Surfers’ Hall of Fame in 2016 for his influence on the surfing community.

A voice for fallen surfers, the affable pastor lead memorials for surf icons including world champion Andy Irons and master forecaster Sean Collins of Surfline.  Additionally, as the Huntington Beach Marine Safety Department’s official pastor, Sato helped lifeguards cope with grief, or PTSD, from the job.

“He was just the most inspirational guy, it seemed like he closed the gap between good and bad and right and wrong,” friend Rick “Rockin’ Fig” Fignetti told the OCRegister. “The world without Sumo, it’s never going to be the same. We’ll always keep him in our hearts … you’re the Surfers’ Savior.”