Dunedin pastor dies after fighting rip current

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC - A Palm Harbor Bishop died Wednesday after he became caught up in a rip current at a North Carolina beach.

Bishop Angelo William Nicolaro, 72, of the Holy Apostles Catholic Charismatic Church in Dunedin, was vacationing with family members at Ocean Isle Beach  in Brunswick County, North Carolina.

Nicolaro, known as Father Bill, is being remembered as a mentor, friend and a brother in Christ.

Father Mark Bryan said, "He was a loving, kind, giving man. He wanted people to always remember to love God first and foremost, with all your heart, all your soul."

Bishop Angelo was at an annual family vacation in Ocean Isles, North Carolina. He was swimming with his son when they were caught in a dangerous rip current. His son made it to shore, but Bishop Nicolaro drowned.  His family had just celebrated his 50th wedding anniversary the night before.

Two other drownings occurred on the same day not far from Ocean Isle Beach.  One of the victims was North Carolina Chief District Court Judge Mitchell McLean, 54.  The other drowning victim was a Waxhaw, N.C.woman, Mary Anne Galway, 55.

A fourth victim, Galway's husband, was treated and released from New Hanover Regional Hospital.

A visitation is scheduled for Monday from 6-9pm at the Holy Apostles Church in Dunedin. Bishops Nicolaro's funeral will be Tuesday.

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