Teen firefighter dies in boating accident

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By Sam Hickman

 A teenage volunteer firefighter with the Northwest Volunteer Fire Department died in a boating accident last weekend.

Daniel Gralak Jr., 17, was on a boat with a friend near Sunset Harbor when the boat hit a wooden structure in the water on Saturday afternoon, Aug. 9.

Both Gralak and his friend were taken to New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington, Brunswick County Fire Marshal Scott Garner said.

Gralak was an active member of the Northwest Volunteer Fire Department. He was a 2014 graduate of Brunswick County Early College High School, where he was an honors student.

The Northwest department has posted several tributes to Gralak on its Facebook page.

On Sunday, a post read, “Prayers for Daniel’s family. Unfortunately he did not make it. Prayers still requested for the other young man involved. Daniel, aka Honey Bear, was a fine young man.”

A donor flag flew last weekend at New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Daniel's memory.