A surfer who was at Marina Del Rey Beach in Venice Beach and witnessed what happened to Shad Gaspard posted on Reddit his experience of witnessing what went down.
“I was there. I was body surfing and started to come in as I noticed a lifeguard presence congregating on the shore and I saw someone heading out. As I came in, which took forever as the tides were incredible strong I noticed the kid fighting against the waves and the life guard headed towards him.
When I got to shore, 2 surfers were pointing and screaming, a scream I’ll never forget and I realized there’s another person drowning. I could see him bobbing next to the surfers so I pointed and directed a guard towards the surfers outside the break.
The guard went in, the surfers continued to wave and eventually more and more search people came out. Once I saw people in snorkels, which was probably about 10 minutes in, it was obvious he wasn’t probably going to turn up alive.
Cops showed up, eventually helicopters. I talked with the surfers and they said an adult went under.
I felt awful, I was wondering if I should have helped the kid to shore so the guard could have focused on the father, but I didn’t want to intervene and now the kid’s father is dead. I’m gonna let it rest at I was powerless and I didn’t want to add to the mess. The waves were really nasty, I’ve body surfed my whole life in San Diego and today I was being cautious, I was worried when I saw whole families out.
I needed to see this posting because I’ve felt weird all night and bad because I technically could have turned around, swam past the breaks and maybe saved a life, or drowned myself. I dunno it’s sad. I left after 40 minutes of helicopters flying low over the water assisting the search.
I saw the mom hear her husband not turn up and saw her run down the beach looking for him, and I saw a kid sitting on a shoreline with a look he knew that they were past the point of finding his friend’s dad alive. It was harrowing to see the reality unfold in a family a loved one didn’t return from the ocean.
I go to the beach one f*cking day and this happens.”
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