A happy ending: Florida diver rescued by family

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Dylan had an Angel watching over him!

From Daily Mail:

“A  21-year-old free diver was miraculously rescued by his family after he was swept away by the Gulf Stream while diving more than five miles from the Florida Keys.

Diver and spear fisherman Dylan Gartenmayer described the moment he heard the hum of his grandfather’s boat as he hopelessly lay watching the sun set over shark-infested waters.

Hours earlier on Thursday afternoon, he had been with two friends as he descended for his final dive of the day around the West Sambo Reef.

Beneath the surface he was caught in a current that drew him 150 feet below the surface and spat him out around a mile away.

His friends notified both the US Coast Guard and his family, who began a desperate search, racing against the setting sun.

After emerging he swam around a mile back towards the reef, where he cut free mooring buoys which he tied together to form a makeshift raft. ‘I was watching the sun drop pretty quickly,’ said Gartenmayer in a video posted to social media.

Fishing bait started washing up around him, attracting the attention of sharks.  I’d just seen a reef shark swam past me,’ he said. ‘I had a bunch of bait start blowing up around, I could see mackerel skyrocketing.’

As the temperature began to drop and a chill set in, the diver described how he used the buoys to keep his body as far out of the water as possible. ‘I was starting to shiver at that point and my hands were starting to feel a little numb, so were my toes, so I knew this was starting to get serious,’ he said.

A rescue mission involving coast guard boats and aircraft was underway, but they were unable to spot him.  ‘I had a small plane fly above but they didn’t see me,’ he said. ‘About 30 minutes later they flew back again, still didn’t see me.’

‘Shortly after that the sun had disappeared past the horizon. Looking to the east it was pitch black, looking to the west you could see the remnants of the sunset. As I saw the sun disappear I knew things were starting to get a little more dire,’ he said.

But then the amateur search party led by his family struck gold. ‘By some miracle my parents and everybody else on board my grandfather’s boat ended up driving and basically landing right on top of me,’ he said.

‘I could hear the engines running and I knew from there that was actually my grandfather’s boat.’

Read the whole story here.

DCG

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