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Kelly Slater: 'I Really Miss Andy'

11/3/2010 5:05 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Kelly Slater -- one of Andy Irons' greatest surf rivals -- is opening up about the sudden passing of his friend ... saying, "I'm lucky to have known him and had the times we had together."

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In a statement, released today, Slater says, "I feel blessed that we worked through the differences we had and I was able to learn what I'm made of because of Andy."

Slater continues ... "He was the most intense competitor I've ever known and one of the most sensitive people. He had so much life left in him and it hurts to think about."

Check out the full statement after the jump ...

"Andy was an absolutely gifted individual. I'm lucky to have known him and had the times we had together.

I feel blessed that we worked through the differences we had and I was able to learn what I'm made of because of Andy.

We enjoyed many quiet times together with our girls in the last year and I got to know a happy, funny, innocent kid who was happy to live every second with the people he loved. I'm so sad.

My thoughts are with Bruce and Lyndie and their parents and all of his many friends around the world. It's a huge and far too premature loss for all of us.

He was the most intense competitor I've ever known and one of the most sensitive people. He had so much life left in him and it hurts to think about.

We look forward to his memory living on with our memories of him and his child on the way. There are a lot of uncles awaiting his arrival.

I really miss Andy. He had a really good heart.

With love,

Kelly"
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29 COMMENTS

No Avatar
1.

6one9    

Andy was a total hottie!! :( when fine men die young!!

1447 days ago
2.

Cayenne    

He will be missed by all!

1447 days ago
3.

JLS    

Methadone? I am afraid we will find out he had a raging drug prob. I sincerely hope not but the signs are all there...

RIP, Andy. You will be missed and your skill never forgotten.

1447 days ago
4.

I'm a crazy person...    

Sl8r is and always has been a class act. AI will be greatly missed. May God be with the entire Irons family during this dark time.

1447 days ago
5.

sharky    

what a fn dopehead>>> a nobel peace award banks secure car industry still afloat and the jo blows stab lady liberty in the back once again.GAVE US GUNS n take away MINIMUM WAGES ship our jobs to india n china GOP takes obama credits and coversup burtion freddy and fannie with a thrown election And now wants credit for the end of the ression same old same old tic tic boom boom WARHead GOP`ss white white baby never grows up

1447 days ago
6.

LeRoy    

Spoken like a true champ.

Tough loss :(

1447 days ago
7.

wasted days and wasted nights    

Kelly is definitely keepin' it classy with that statement. Nice to hear that he had worked out his differences with Andy. I am shocked and saddened over Andy's death as I hold all of these big-time surfers in high regard. They are, as the saying goes, the men who ride mountains.

1447 days ago
8.

stevet    

To EZPZ:

Your comment is absurdly rude and heartless. May you suffer for it.

1447 days ago
9.

MIDNIGHT TOKER    

all of his freinds will come crawling out of the woodwork now to get fasce time ,,but he died alone..hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
typical

1447 days ago
10.

Laurenlighthouse    

Why are people leaving comments that have no heart or are simply cruel heartless jokes. TOTALLY LAME>>>>>

Someone died, a hero to many, a friend to others, family to more... Leave it alone or lead with goodness.

RIP AI

1447 days ago
11.

Murf    

Wow! Another famous person OD's. This is really getting boring.

1447 days ago
12.

werone    

Well said Laurenlighthouse - Too bad so many jerks out there - Love to all his family, friends and fans - so heartbreaking...

1447 days ago
13.

A    

those two drugs would have been a common treatment for the pain associated with "bone crush" fever... the man was an athlete

all kinda surreal.

1447 days ago
14.

IRONINGSURFBOARD    

I could out surf him in my sleep he was all dope and GOP buddys

1447 days ago
15.

paylinsurfpresident    

EERA surf is UP DUDE..better get a ironing board and eat those sand beetles cous america is going back to work for 25cents per hour picking up trash after the rest of the world or shotin holes in it!

1447 days ago
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