Tony Lara died in South Dakota on Saturday. The former “Deadliest Catch” star was 50.
According to People, Lara did not die on the dangerous Discovery channel reality show, where he was the captain of a crabbing boat called the Cornelia Marie. He died in Sturgis, South Dakota, and was found in a private home. TMZ reports that he died in his sleep, but the cause of death is unclear. Officials are waiting for autopsy results to find out why Lara died.
RIP Capt Tony Lara! You will be missed. Prayers for family and friends. ____ pic.twitter.com/dViRpd8GyD
— Deanna D (@Poldera3) August 8, 2015
The official Facebook page for the Cornelia Marie posted a tribute to the late captain. They revealed that while Lara was not currently the boat’s captain, he still kept in touch with the crew. “He came to see us a couple months ago when he flew down to check out the Cornelia Marie after our big shipyard this year. Our hearts are heavy today,” the post reads. “Captain Tony Lara will continue to be in our thoughts and remembered as a generous, talented, smart and caring man. We will miss you Tony.”
The Cornelia Marie’s official website has been turned into a tribute to Lara. In a message about his passing, fans are asked to toast Lara’s life. “So today, tonight or just right now, I urge you all, in honor of our friend Tony....to walk, run, sache or swagger on down to your local watering hole, give a call to the bar-keep and order up a Duck Fart. And you raise up that glass, raise it up as high as you can and toast a man who was a great Captain and a true friend,” the post reads. “Get someone to take a picture and post it to your Facebook and share your toast for all of Tony's friends to enjoy.”
Unfortunately, this isn’t the first death for the crew of the Cornelia Marie. Lara was brought onto “Deadliest Catch” after the boat’s first captain, Phil Harris, died due to an intracranial hemorrhage after a stroke in 2010. The show suffered another loss last month when associate producer Joe McMahon died, E! Online reports. He was shot in California.