Man dies after jon boat sinks off of Crystal Beach near Palm Harbor
7:39 AM, Dec 2, 2013
5:21 PM, Dec 2, 2013
Two men had to swim to shore after their jon boat sank when a wave overtook the vessel, according to a report from the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office. One of them later died.
According to investigators, two men, Stephen J. Chadwick, 24, of Tarpon Springs, and Joseph M. Citro, 24, of Indianapolis, boarded a jon boat off Crystal Beach Sunday afternoon just after 2:00 p.m. The two were headed to meet friends on the spoil islands.
Less than an hour into their trip, when they were between Crystal Beach and Honeymoon Island, the boat began taking on water and sunk after a wave overtook it.
The two men capsized the boat, and initially used it to stay afloat.
Investigators say eventually, the two decided to try to swim to shore.
Chadwick wore a life vest; Citro used a backpack as a flotation device.
The two remained together, and investigators say Citro helped to keep Chadwick alert as they continued heading to shore.
Just before 7:00 p.m., as they approached shore, Chadwick lost consciousness. Investigators say Citro pulled him in at 908 Point Seaside Drive in Palm Harbor and performed CPR.
Citro got help from a resident of that address. The resident called 911 and assisted with CPR.
PCSO Deputies responded to the scene, as did Palm Harbor Fire Department.
Chadwick was transported by ambulance to Helen Ellis Hospital and later died. Citro was transported by ambulance to Helen Ellis for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.
The investigation continues and is being conducted by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission.