Justin Tennison, a crew member of the Time Bandit fishing vessel featured on the Discovery Channel reality series "Deadliest Catch," has been found dead in a Homer, Alaska hotel room.
Andy Hillstrand, co-captain of the Time Bandit, announced the death of Tennison (pictured, second from right; left, from Facebook) on his Facebook page on Tuesday.
"It is with great sadness that the Time Bandit family announces the death of crew member, Justin Tennison. Justin died peacefully in his sleep the night of February 21, 2011 … He worked on the Time Bandit, alongside his second cousin, Eddie Uwekoolani, Jr., serving as engineer during the tendering seasons, and joined the Time Bandit crew as a deckhand fishing the Red King 2010 and Opilio 2011 seasons."
The tragedy comes a year after the death of "Deadliest Catch" Capt. Phil Harris, who died at 53 after suffering a stroke.
Hillstrand characterized Tennison as "tough as a bull and … an all-around good hand," adding, "We will miss him terribly and wish his family all the best during this most difficult time … Justin is survived by a son, daughter, sister, father and grandparents. He was 34 years old."
Lt. Randy Rosencrans, of the Homer Police Department, told TheWrap that police found Tennison after they were called to the Best Western Bidarka Inn on Tuesday with a report that a dead male was in one of the rooms. Rosencrans said police found a small amount of marijuana, a well as alcohol, in the hotel room. Tennison's autopsy is scheduled for Wednesday.
In a statement, the Discovery Channel said, "Discovery Channel is saddened by the passing of Time Bandit crew member Justin Tennison. We send our sympathies to his entire family and fellow crew members during this most difficult time."