Beloved San Francisco surfer and pie maker remembered after deadly surfing accident

A San Francisco man known for his surfing skills and his pie business is being remembered by his family and friends.

A wave pushed Haruwn Wesley into a rock at Fort Point on December 13.

Sadly, he died from his injuries Sunday, a week later.

Haruwn was a beloved member of the community, even being recognized as a hero by the American Red Cross for saving the lives of people who had been swept out to sea in the San Francisco Bay.

Family members describe him as a man of many talents who impacted many lives. Yet he was humble and considered himself a student of life. 

"He just had that presence. You could tell that it was something special," says Margaret Coles Wesley, his wife.       

Photographer Joe McNally captures an image of Haruwn Wesley beneath the Golden Gate Bridge. (Joe McNally)

She describes her husband as a renaissance man, proud of his dual heritage: African American and Chinese.

An expert surfer who was still going strong at 64 years old.

"I want people not to forget what a quietly amazing person he was," says Coles Wesley.

The native San Franciscan was also passionate about his business making pies. - He was owner of Shampa's Pies in Pacifica. 

Coles Wesley says Haruwn's zest for life and generosity drew people to him. 

He was recognized by the San Francisco Police Department and the American Red Cross for saving the lives of people caught in the surf on several occasions over the years.

On December 13 while surfing at Fort Point around 5 p.m, it appears a wave pushed him into a large rock, causing internal injuries.

"We did CPR. We gave him mouth to mouth. Did chest compressions," says Hunter Chiles, a friend.

He says he helped pull Haruwn out of the water to try to save his life. Chiles sas they had been surfing together shortly before the accident.  

"He's irreplaceable. He's one of a kind, a real standout dude," says Chiles.

Haruwn was hospitalized for a week before he died Sunday, December 20.

His family says he never regained consciousness, but that they're grateful to have that time with him.

"I know it was really hard to hang on so I really appreciate all that he's done for me, my mom and our family," says Simone Wesley, Haruwn's daughter.  

On this Christmas Day, Haruwn's wife and daughter say being at the bakery he built from the ground up gives them comfort.

Remembering all his accomplishments a champion tai chi artist and a jazz musician helps them cope with the loss.

They say the loving husband and father lose his life in a place he loved and where he was at peace. 

"He had a pure bliss when he was riding a wave so that is amazing to me," says Coles Wesley.  

Family members say his motto was "Be all that you can be. Always forward, never backwards."

Beliefs that they say will help them move forward.

A GoFundMe has been established to help Wesley's family.