Montauk Man Drowns in Rough Surf at Ditch Plains

Gordon M. Grant
A sign urging people to respect Montauk on display at Ditch Plains Beach.

A 31-year-old man drowned while swimming with his fiancée and a third person in the Atlantic Ocean surf off Ditch Plains Beach in Montauk on Tuesday evening, East Hampton Town Police said.

Benjamin Z. Kitburi waded out into the water with his 26-year-old bride-to-be Persia Jensen and 32-year-old Jensen Turner when strong rip currents pulled all three Montauk residents into deeper water at 7:34 p.m., police said.

The trio was separated by the rough seas. Three nearby surfers pulled Kitburi, who was unconscious, to shore. Jensen and Turner managed to swim back to shore, where they collapsed.

Kitburi was taken to Stony Brook Southampton Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Jensen was taken to the same hospital for evaluation and Turner of Montauk was evaluated at the scene. 

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