Police: Matthew Grimaldi, of Lake Grove, dies after falling from bluff in Wading River

Grimaldi was attending a party at Hulse Landing Beach in Wading River when he and friends decided to climb a cliff. (5/27/14)

WADING RIVER - A Lake Grove teenager died Sunday after he fell from a steep bluff while attending a beach party in Wading River.

Riverhead police say it happened just before 7 p.m. Matthew Grimaldi, 18, was attending a gathering at the Oakwood on the Sound Homeowner's Association Beach at the end of Hulse Landing Road.

Police say Grimaldi had climbed up the beach's steep cliffs and lost his footing on the way down. He fell onto a tree, and a branch punctured his chest.

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Grimaldi was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Residents say the beach is a popular spot for small parties, and it's not unusual for kids to climb the cliffs for a better view, even though there are warning signs.

Grimaldi was a senior at Ward Melville High School. Family members say he was set to attend Clarkson University in Potsdam this fall.

Grief counselors will be at Ward Melville today for students who are coping with the loss of their classmate.

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