New York teacher, surf coach, missing after surfing off Sumatra
Even experienced surfers can run into trouble in unfamiliar waters.
July 26th, 2011
07:27 AM ET

New York teacher, surf coach, missing after surfing off Sumatra

Several blogs are buzzing Tuesday after a Long Island math teacher and well known local surfer went missing Sunday off the coast of West Lampung, Sumatra. Waves are notoriously treacherous off that  area of the Indonesian island. They are typically 12 feet or higher. CNN's iReport received a video of friends of the surfer holding candlelit vigil.

Daniel Bobis, who taught at Long Beach High School, founded the school's winning surf team and the first competitive group in the state. A colleague at the school told the Long Beach Patch, a local news website, that the "rescue efforts are horrible there" because the area where he was surfing is so remote.

"It was just a day like any other here," Brian Lonergan, another surfer who was with Bobis, told the New York Post. "Danny had just taken a wave before me. I couldn't see him, and a few minutes later, his board washed up on the shore."

Lonergan, Bobis' wife, Rachel, and the owner of a surf camp where the three were staying scoured the beach for the next 11 hours, the Post reports. A rescue team began searching after that.

Lonergan told the newspaper that the water wasn't particularly rough. "And there was nothing really abnormal about the size of the waves either. Danny is a really capable surfer and a really capable swimmer."

He and the missing surfer's family are trying to work with local officials in Sumatra and get the United States Consulate to help by sending a rescue helicopter, according to the Post.

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Filed under: Indonesia • Surfing
soundoff (37 Responses)
  1. Melissa F

    A fund has been created to support the search including helicopter rental, local manpower, travel expenses, etc. All donations will be given directly to the family. Thank you for your support. To donate, log in to Paypal and send funds to

    July 26, 2011 at 8:33 am | Report abuse |
  2. Robert Imerese

    This is my son-in law. A part of my family. Don't sick losers like this have anything better to do than post the kind of comments that i see here? Where are your feeling for people who are hurting. karma will bite you for this. LOSERS.

    July 26, 2011 at 8:56 am | Report abuse |
  3. s kel

    its tragic that people engage in some form of extream sport thats life threatening ,forgetting if anything goes wrong they have famlies that will worry and suffer. my heart goes out to these persons famlies. i hope they are somehow alive.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:14 am | Report abuse |
    • hmmmm84

      It's also tragic when some people display no compassion and fail to realize that this is a real person who has family and loved ones who will be reading these.

      July 27, 2011 at 2:25 am | Report abuse |
  4. Common Sense

    Think before posting tasteless & insensitive comments. A lot of people who care deeply about Danny will be reading these. Our prayers and thoughts are with you and all involved Robert.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:15 am | Report abuse |
  5. Robert Imerese

    I'm sorry. My comments were to losers whose comments have been removed.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:17 am | Report abuse |
  6. Michelle

    Keep your hope alive. There are miracles and my prayers are with the family. I must salute the person who risks his life in pursuit of happiness. God Bless.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:18 am | Report abuse |
  7. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    Mr. Imerese,
    I am deeply saddened by this misfortune that has fallen upon you and your family.
    I am sure that many others who post comments here share my feelings.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |
  8. dirk

    Maaaan. Ive surfed there. Those are some killer waves, dude. I mean tubular.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:27 am | Report abuse |
  9. Beach Lover

    Prayers are being said for your son in law. Ignore the negativity

    July 26, 2011 at 9:27 am | Report abuse |
  10. dirk

    And i am way sorry for the family. Maybe he will turn up down the beach all smiling and ok. We sure pray so.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:28 am | Report abuse |
  11. Michelle

    We have tremendous rip tides in NJ that can pull you miles from your location. He could be adrift. If he is a strong swimmer he could be out there still. I am a science teacher, off in the summer in pursuit of my own fun and recreation. I am hoping Daniel is found afloat just like those survivor shows. Praying.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
  12. cesar

    He must have really loved the sport. It is sad he is gone. It was doing something he loved though. He will always be with the beautiful waves. Always remembered by those who loved him.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
  13. nor el

    They said he surfed some off the coast of Jersey. Did he get to meet Snooki and the guys? That would have been something.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
    • a relative

      For that comment you have now the worst karma imaginable drawn to your soul. May God help you and all haters.

      July 26, 2011 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  14. SAMMY

    The Jersey Shore crew really need to step up to the plate on this. They need to shell out some cash to help out a homie. Lets find this guy. Send in some cash.

    July 26, 2011 at 9:58 am | Report abuse |
  15. Abby

    If you know him, you love him. An amazing guy that we know is going to get home safe!

    July 26, 2011 at 10:05 am | Report abuse |
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