A RAF officer died after getting into trouble in the sea while saving a friend’s daughter at a beach known as hell’s mouth.
Sgt Stephen Hulsmeier, 47, was on holiday in Porth Neigwl, north Wales when he dashed into the water.
He saved the girl but got into difficulty himself and died after being brought ashore.
An inquest into the death heard yesterday how the stretch of unguarded water is notoriously hazardous due to its strong currents and large breaking waves.
A team including the coastguard, police and paramedics as well as members of the public tried for two hours to revive Sgt Hulsmeier after pulling him from the sea.
The RAF has paid tribute to the sergeant – known as Hulzi – who worked as an aircraft engineer at Brize Norton in Oxfordshire and lived in Shropshire.
A statement said: ‘It is with sincere sadness that we announce the death of Sergeant Stephen Hulsmeier on Friday 6 August following a tragic accident whilst on holiday with his family and friends.
‘Steve – known as Hulzi to his many friends – was a popular aircraft engineer and during his 23 years’ service he worked on many squadrons and stations.
The RAF say his wife Becky and their son are receiving support.
‘They wish to pass on their thanks for all of the messages of support they have received so far which is providing them some comfort,’ the RAF’s tribute added.
Witness Bryn Dando, who saw Sgt Hulsmeier being brought ashore – said more safety measures are needed on the beach.
Mr Dando said he would like to see lifeguards on duty full time and more signage telling people of the specific dangers.
A Gwynedd council spokesperson said: ‘As a council we extend our deepest condolences to the family of the individual who passed away… at this extremely sad time.
‘Warning signs are in place which refer to specific hazards at this location including strong currents and large breaking waves. The signage also informs the public that the beach is not supervised.
‘We urge all members of the public to be mindful of such hazards, to be very careful and take notice of specific information, guidance and warning signs.’
The inquest was adjourned for more inquiries.
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