Australian Olympic snowboarder Alex Pullin dead at 32

Alex Pullin represented Australia in snowboard cross at the 2014 Winter Olympics. Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Australian two-time world champion snowboarder Alex Pullin drowned Wednesday while spearfishing off a Gold Coast beach.

Pullin was in waters off Palm Beach in southern Queensland, Australia, on Wednesday morning, local media reported.

"The 32-year-old Aussie snowboarder was found by a snorkeller on an artificial reef just before 11 a.m. Investigations into his death are continuing," the Australian Broadcasting Corporation said on its Twitter feed.

Brisbane-based newspaper the Courier-Mail reported that Pullin "suffered a shallow water blackout" just after 10:30 a.m. local time (0030 GMT).

Justin Payne, a Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) officer in charge at Coolangatta, Queensland, said emergency services responded to a call midmorning.

"The QAS received a phone call to support the lifeguards down here, where they were attempting to retrieve and resuscitate a 32-year-old male, who was found on the bottom of the ocean," Payne said.

"The resuscitation attempt was for approximately 45 to 50 minutes, with CPR the entire time. Unfortunately, the patient [did not] survive."

A Queensland Police spokesman confirmed that a man had drowned but declined to name him.

Pullin was twice crowned world champion (2011, 2013) and won bronze in 2017. The three-time Olympian was also the flag bearer for Australia's team at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

The Australian Olympic Committee are mourning the tragic loss.

"This is an incredibly sad day for us all. Chumpy was a champion bloke as well as being a champion athlete. He had great charisma that allowed him to be a natural leader," Ian Chesterman, the Australian Olympic Team's Chef de Mission in 2010, 2014 and 2018 said.

"He was always prepared to give his time to build winter sport in this country because he was so passionate about what he did. His enthusiasm was infectious and his impact on Olympic sport can't be overstated.

"Chumpy will be greatly missed, not just within our winter sports family but by the so many people he impacted on both here and overseas.

"This is a desperately sad time for his family, his friends, teammates and all in winter sports. We are all devastated and our heartfelt sympathies go to his loved ones."

The New South Wales Institute of Sport also paid tribute to Pullin, describing him as a man who "pursued his passions in life and sport."

"This loss is tragic to everyone he inspired and loved, including everyone at TeamNSWIS," the organisation said on Twitter.

Snow Australia was another sporting body to express its sadness at Pullin's passing.

"The Snow Australia community is shocked and saddened by the sudden passing of triple Olympian, Alex Pullin, who today lost his life while spear fishing on the Gold Coast this morning," a statement read.

"Our deepest condolences are with Alex's family, as well as his team mates and support staff. Alex was a beloved member of the Snow Australia community and he will be dearly missed."