Wicked Tuna's Charlie Griffin and Dog Leila Dead After Boating Accident

Charlie Griffin, who starred on National Geographic's Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks, and his dog Leila died in a boating accident, a post shared to his Facebook page confirmed.

By Elyse Dupre Mar 05, 2024 6:55 PMTags
Watch: Wicked Tuna’s Charlie Griffin & Dog Leila Dead After Boating Accident

The Wicked Tuna family has lost one of its own.

Captain Charlie "Griff" Griffin—who appeared on Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks—has died, a message shared to his Facebook page confirmed.

"It is with the deepest sadness we report that Charlie Griffin and his beloved dog, Leila, have passed away in a boating accident today, March 4th," the post read. "Please keep family and friends in your thoughts and prayers. We will forever remember Griff!" 

While the announcement didn't go into specifics about the boating accident, news of Griffin's passing comes shortly after the Coast Guard shared it had been alerted of an incident in North Carolina's Outer Banks the previous evening.

A spokesperson for the Coast Guard confirmed to E! News that it was contacted at around 11:35 p.m. on March 3 about two people who had been traveling in a recreational vessel from Virginia Beach, Virginia to Wanchese, North Carolina, where it was set to receive repairs. The last communication with the vessel, per the spokesperson, had been at about 6:15 p.m. earlier in the evening.

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The Coast Guard and local first responders searched the water and land between Nags Head and Rodanthe, and the boat was found approximately 2.5 miles south of Oregon Inlet, the spokesperson confirmed. It was in this area, the spokesperson added, that a deceased dog and an unresponsive person were found to have been washed ashore.

The spokesperson said the individual recovered was pronounced dead by the medical examiner and that they are still searching for the second person—adding they are not publicly sharing either name out of respect for next of kin.

E! News has reached out to the Medical Examiner but has yet to hear back.


Griffin—who owned and operated the boat the Reels of Fortune—appeared on seasons two through five of Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks.

"Bluefin tuna fishermen venture to North Carolina's treacherous fishing grounds, the Outer Banks, where they battle for the ocean's most lucrative prize," National Geographic's description of the show reads. "A single giant bluefin can be worth more than $20,000, but the dangerous waters, small quota and explosive rivalries make the Outer Banks, nicknamed 'graveyard of the Atlantic,' the most challenging place in the world to catch these elusive fish."

The Virginian-Pilot was first to report the news.

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