When she went into the ocean and struggled to swim, a man saved his 8-year-old daughter and handed her to his wife. Moments later, he disappeared below the waves.
Thomas Zakrewski, 46, was visiting southwest Florida from Georgia with his wife and daughter.
The three have been walking alongside a sandbar at Captiva Island near Fort Myers on Tuesday, the Lee County Sheriff’s Workplace said in a statement.
His spouse walked forward of them but glanced back and saw Zakrewski and his daughter struggling in the Gulf of Mexico, police mentioned.
The woman immediately jumped in, and her husband passed her the girl.
He struggled to stay afloat and stopped coming up for air, police stated.
The sheriff’s office stated it deployed its marine units to search for Zakrewski, with additional teams from the US Coast Guard, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Fee and the Sanibel and Captiva fire departments.
Conditions had been “extremely poor,” officers mentioned, and rough waters and winds messed with the marine emergency response team’s search efforts.
Officials recovered Zakrewski’s body about 9:54 p.m. Tuesday.
Gary Levine of the County Sheriff’s Office said it appeared that Zakrewski was caught in a rip present, a powerful and quick-moving channel of water frequent in the Gulf of Mexico.
Rip present deaths account for the majority of surf fatalities in Florida. In 2018, the National Weather Service (NWS) reported, 27 people, drowned in Florida currents.