LISBON (AP) — Veteran Brazilian surfer Marcio Freire died Thursday while tow-in surfing in the big waves off Nazaré, on Portugal’s central coast, the local maritime authority said.

Support personnel on jet skis managed to get the 47-year-old man to the beach, but all attempts to revive him failed.

Freire was one of three Brazilian surfers who became known as the «Mad Dogs» after conquering the giant wave «Jaws» in Hawaii. They appeared in the 2016 documentary Mad Dogs.

Tributes from other surfers poured in on Instagram.

“He surfed all day with a big smile on his face. So I will keep it in my memory. Legend”, published the also big wave surfer Nic von Rupp.

“Today we lost a great man, a very good friend and legendary surfer, Marcio Freire. He was such a happy spirit, always with a smile on his face…Rest in peace my friend,” wrote sports photographer Fred Pompermayer.

Nazaré has some of the biggest waves in the world. They are magnified by a three-mile-deep underwater canyon that ends where the North Atlantic meets the shoreline near the old fishing village.

American Garrett McNamara put Nazaré on the map in 2011 when he set a world record for the biggest wave ever surfed at 78 feet.

Brazilian Rodrigo Koxa surpassed McNamara’s mark in 2017, also in Nazaré, and German Sebastian Steudtner broke the record there again in 2020, surfing a 26-meter wave.