- Associated Press - Thursday, July 7, 2016

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (AP) - A new stainless steel statue at the Newport Beach pier honors a lifeguard who died rescuing a struggling swimmer two summers ago.

A ceremony was held Wednesday to dedicate the gleaming 9-foot memorial to Ben Carlson, a 15-year department veteran.

It depicts a standing man shielding his eyes and scanning the waves just off-shore.

Carlson died July 6, 2014 when he was hit by a large wave while trying to rescue a swimmer. The 32-year-old was the first city lifeguard to die in the line of duty.

The Orange County Register reports (https://bit.ly/1MiG54M) about 2,000 people attended the ceremony including Carlson’s parents and friends.

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