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Swimmer drowns at Holden Beach on 4th of July; high rip risk in Brunswick Co.

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HOLDEN BEACH, NC (WWAY) -- A man is dead after drowning yesterday at Holden Beach. It marks the fourth drowning this week along the Brunswick County coast, as the risk for rip currents remains high.

Brunswick County Coroner Greg White says the victim is Randall Joyce, 57. White says Joyce was dead on arrival at the hospital.

Brunswick County Emergency Services Director Anthony Marzano says Joyce was one of four people pulled from the water off Holden Beach yesterday.

Wednesday, three people drowned at Brunswick County beaches after getting caught in rip currents. Mitchell McLean, 54, of Wilkesboro, and Mary Anne Galway, 55, of Waxhaw, died at Sunset Beach Wednesday afternoon. A few hours earlier, William Nicolaro, 72, of Palm Harbor, FL, drowned at Ocean Isle Beach.

The National Weather Service says a high rip current risk is in effect for the coast of Brunswick County and Horry County, SC, from North Myrtle Beach northward until 8 p.m. Forecasters say the strongest rip currents will be in a two-hour period on either side of high tide, which is around noon today.

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