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Tributes have poured in for a Loch Ness monster hunter after his sudden death.
Tour boat captain Dave Bell, who died last Friday aged 54, was praised as a “true inspiration”.
He ran Loch Ness Cruises, a firm from Drumnadrochit, Scotland which took tourists monster hunting, the Daily Record reports.
The cruise boat company takes visitors on tours of the famed Scottish water and possibly a glimpse of the notorious monster in the vessel Nessie Hunter.
Dave, originally from Wales, had moved north to take over the business with his family and was well regarded by residents in the Highland community.
His son Mike Bell, whose Facebook profile lists him as the skipper at Loch Ness Cruises, announced the sad news.
He said it was “impossible” to imagine the future without his beloved dad.
Mike wrote: "The hardest post to make but for those that don't know, my dad very suddenly passed away on Friday.
"It's impossible to think of the future without him but my family and I would just like to say how much we appreciate all the kind messages and the support we've received.
'Little bigfoot played with camper's car before 10ft dad stormed over beating his chest'
"My dad was a true inspiration for me and will be missed beyond words."
The Loch Ness hub information centre said the close-knit “entire community” was “shocked and saddened” by the death of Dave, who was heavily involved in local youth football.
It wrote on Facebook: "In recent years, Dave, his wife Julie and son Michael, took over Loch Ness Cruises and Celtic Crafts from George and Lenora Edwards.
Terrifying 6-foot prehistoric worm would leap from seabed and snap prey in half
"Dave dedicated a considerable amount of his life to Glen Urquhart football club, spending many years coaching youth football.
"The thoughts of all those associated with Loch Ness Hub are with Julie, Michael, Owen and family at this difficult time."
The Loch Ness living tour agency also said it was “saddened”.
In an online post, it said: “Dave and his son Mike were kind enough to speak to me for an article on the website last summer and I had the pleasure of going out on one of their tours towards the end of the season.
"My thoughts are with Julie, Michael, Owen and family at this difficult time.”
The first sighting of the monster Nessie – said to lurk in the loch near Inverness – this year was officially recorded last month.
There were 13 “confirmed” sightings in 2019.
- Loch Ness Monster
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