ANCHORAGE (AP) — A new member of a ‘Deadliest Catch’ fishing crew has been found dead in an Alaska motel room.
Justin Tennison was found dead Tuesday afternoon in a room at the Best Western Bidarka Inn in Homer, police said Wednesday.
Tennison, 33, was a member of the Time Bandit, one of the vessels on the popular Discovery Channel reality series. He will make a posthumous debut in the 7th season kicking off in April, said Discovery spokesman Josh Weinberg.
Homer police Lt. Randy Rosencrans said beer, hard liquor and a small amount of marijuana were found in the room. But he added that the cause of death is unknown, although foul play is not suspected.
An autopsy by the state medical examiner’s office was scheduled to take place Wednesday afternoon.
Police believe a party was held at the room the previous night.
Two rooms were registered under Tennison’s name and nearby guests complained about the noise. Police said Tennison was a local resident, but Rosencrans didn’t know why he was staying at the motel.
A phone call was placed from Tennison’s cell phone around midnight, but Rosencrans said he didn’t know who made the call or who it was placed to.
TMZ previously reported the death.
The Time Bandit issued a statement about Tennison’s death on its official website, saying he leaves behind a son, daughter, father, sister and grandparents.
“Justin was tough as a bull and was an all-around good hand,” the statement says. “We will miss him terribly.”
Weinberg also released a statement, saying Discovery was saddened by Tennison’s death.
“We send our sympathies to his entire family and fellow crew members during this most difficult time,” the statement said.
The death comes a little more than year after Capt. Phil Harris of the “Deadliest Catch” fishing vessel Cornelia Marie died following a massive stroke at age 53.
The series, Discovery’s highest rated show, depicts the crab fishing industry in the dangerous waters off Alaska.
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