Local divers rescued after 17 hours in Gulf

Posted: 08/05/2011 in all marine news

ABC7 – 

Two local divers can count their blessings after being stranded for 17 hours in the Gulf. They were found 14 miles off shore from the Florida Keys. The pair was drift diving from their boat.

Bill Oswald has many memories fishing on his boat ‘Reel Livin.’ But last Saturday’s fishing trip with his friend Greg Collier was one the men will never forget.

“We were out spear fishing, had an awesome day spear fishing and made one final last dive in the afternoon,” said Oswald.

Then, he says, fate took a turn for the worst.

“The wind was blowing in one direction really hard, the current was going 90 degrees in a different direction and the boat was just about 300 feet away from us and we could see it, but they couldn’t see us. And we just got separated from it quicker than you’d think,” Oswald remembered.

Another friend back on Oswald’s boat circled the area to try and find them, but had no luck.

That’s when the Coast Guard was called.

“The helicopter flew right over us. I was wearing my spear gun and he couldn’t see us,” said Oswald.

He said shortly after that, the sun began to set.

“I knew when I saw the sun go down, I was there all night,” Oswald said.

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