New Mexico Professor Drowns Trying to Save Son

Ross Word
Ross Word

KAILUA (KHNL) - We know more about the New Mexico man who drowned Sunday afternoon at the Windward Oahu beach. The 12-year-old boy was released from the hospital and members of the Visitor Aloha Society met with the victim's wife and his son trying to help them during this difficult time.

The university of New Mexico history professor is identified as 44-year-old Timothy Moy. His son was taken to the hospital, and has been released.

From their beachside home, Suzi and Ross Word noticed the young family heading to the beach.

Suzi Word recalls, "I would see them everyday, they would come, the father, mom and little boy. He would drag behind with a boogie board. Everyday they would go down and I sat next to them on at least three occasions.

The parents would read on the beach, the boy played in the water."

But Sunday the boy was in over his head. Reporter Beth Hillyer discovered, "Witnesses say the conditions here at the beach are nothing like they were Sunday. They describe rough water and very windy seas."

Tropical Depression Cosme is to blame. Ross Word describes conditions, "The waves are kicking up, the swell coming in, the currents going one direction then another."

Timothy Moy swam out to save his son but was overcome by the powerful surf. A good samaritan with a boogie board recovered both father and son. Word noticed, "The victim was laying on his back on the beach, one fireman was giving chest compressions. I assume it was his wife standing there with his 12 year-old son. They were just holding each other."

Suzi Word chokes back, "It's so gut wrenching to know you see this happy family and you see them on this beach and this happens."

Neighbors say there are no signs warning beachgoers of any danger at that location.

A university of New Mexico spokeswoman says Timothy Moy specialized in the history of science and technology and this year was honored as a presidential teaching fellow.