An ordinary day at the beach quickly became a nightmare for a Florida woman and her young son when their swan-shaped inflatable raft was swept out to sea.
Tara Myers and her seven-year-old son Brennan were floating in the waters off Anna Maria Island on Florida’s Gulf Coast on Oct. 21 when the current swept them out miles from shore.
“I have never been more scared in my entire life, “Myers told WFLA 8.
Myers said she thought the pair would be safe on the floating raft, as the Gulf waters were calm and there was no wind. But it turned out the current was stronger than she realized.
“I was not sure if we were going to keep drifting because land just kept getting farther and farther away,” she recalled.
Myers said she began paddling as hard as she could, but the inflatable swan — a serene smile on its face — barely budged.
“I was just exhausted, and we were not going anywhere,” she said.
Luckily for the mother-and-son duo, beachgoers back on shore took note of their predicament and dialed 911. Eventually, West Manatee Fire Rescue came to their aid.
Myers told reporters she remembers bursting into tears the moment they arrived.
“I literally just laid out on that swan float and cried. So hard,” she said. “Because this could have ended up so much worse.”