A search is under way off the coast of southwest France for the CEO of the surfwear company Quicksilver, whose boat washed ashore Tuesday after he radioed that he’d run into thick fog during his regular morning fishing trip.
The vessel Mascaret III, belonging to Pierre Agnes, 54, was found on the Atlantic beach near Hossegor, a famed surfing spot near his hometown of Capbreton, where Agnes lives with his family, reports NBC News.
Agnes is the chief executive of Boardriders, the Huntington Beach, California-based parent of surfwear brand Quiksilver, the company that Agnes joined more than 30 years ago, according to Fortune.
“Early this morning our CEO, Pierre Agnes, did what he did many mornings and went fishing on his beloved boat to start his day,” Boardriders said in a statement Tuesday confirming the discovery and search. “Later in the morning his boat was recovered on the beach near his hometown and Pierre has not been heard from since.”
“The Boardriders family and entire surfing world are devastated by this news,” the statement said.
“We are concentrating on working with the local authorities on the search and rescue effort and supporting Pierre’s family. Please keep Pierre and his family in your prayers.”
It was not immediately clear if Agnes had been alone on his outing, reports The Guardian.
While aboard his 36-foot sailboat, Agnes radioed that he was postponing his return to port as thick fog moved in, according to port authorities, Reuters reported.
American pro surfer Kelly Slater joined in the concern about his friend, writing on Instagram, “I love this man.”
“I’m praying for a miracle but it’s just starting to hit me what a profound effect this man had on my life and the surf community at large,” Slater posted. “He loved his morning fishing trips, family, Quiksilver, surfing, friends, motorbikes, Capbreton…I’m not even sure how to let it sink in.”
The search for Agnew using air and water vessels continued Wednesday.