The tight-knit pro surfing community is keeping a watchful eye on former Championship Tour star and 2017 Men's Pipe Invitational winner, Dusty Payne, who was severely injured on January 8th while surfing Backdoor Pipeline. He was knocked unconscious for more than two minutes after slamming his head into the reef. The wipeout resulted in multiple wounds on his face, a fractured skull, broken jaw and missing teeth.
Nevertheless, Payne was reportedly refusing pain killers as early as the next day. "He's seen what pain meds do to people, and just keeps his distance," photographer Tom Carey told Stab. "It's crazy. Even with his back surgery, guy took one pain killer and tossed the rest. He's one of the strongest guys I know."
Unfortunately, Payne isn't out of the woods just yet. He's undergoing multiple surgeries to repair damage. Friends and fans alike are rallying to support him with #Dustystrong tributes on their social feeds. Of course, everyone at the WSL wishes Dusty good luck and a speedy recovery.