Indiana University football player, Isaac Griffith, was rescued from rip current, given CPR

SIESTA KEY, Fla - UPDATE: Isaac Griffith has been discharged from Sarasota Memorial hospital.

Isaac Griffith, 19, went swimming in the Gulf of Mexico on Monday evening with three friends when a rip current dragged him out past a buoy and under the water.

ORIGINAL STORY BELOW:

An Indiana University football player remains in a medically-induced coma after he was swept away by a rip current Monday night off Siesta Key.

Isaac Griffith, 19, went swimming in the Gulf of Mexico about 6:30 p.m. with three friends when a rip current dragged him out past a buoy and under the water.

"He was calling for help and I ran and got him," said Mitch McCune, 19, also an IU freshman.

McCune told ABC Action News that he, Isaac and another friend went to Siesta Beach to throw a football. When they got too hot, they went into the water to cool off.

Another friend stayed on the beach.

He recalls being in waist deep water and the weather being poor.

ABC Action News had cameras in the area rolling at that time and caught severe rain and heavy winds. There was also a tornado watch for the area.

"(The current) just kept pushing us out," McCune said of the rip current.

McCune said the friend who stayed on the beach heard the screams for help, ran up a lifeguard tower and tried to point out where Griffith was in the water.

Trained in CPR, McCune began administering it to his friend. Griffith was breathing on his own somewhat when he was pulled from the water, he said.

"God put me in the right place at the right time," he said.

Griffith was taken to Sarasota Memorial Hospital. His parents flew in and are now by his side.

The family has asked for privacy but is sending out updates about their son through Twitter.

"My family needs all the prayers we can for our son Isaac who is in critical condition following a water accident involving a rip current," his father, Shannon Griffith, tweeted Monday night.

The IU athletic department released a statement Monday night.

"We are aware of Isaac Griffith’s condition," it said. "Our prayers are with Isaac and his family and we ask Hoosier Nation to keep the Griffith family in their thoughts."

McCune declined to comment on Griffith's condition other than to say everyone is praying for his recovery.

According to a police report, the teens were drinking prior to the accident. 

However, McCune said that is not true and told ABC Action News the teens were drinking the previous night. When paramedics asked if Griffith could have any alcohol in his system, he said, they answered yes.

McCune feels it has been misconstrued that alcohol played a role.

Print this article Back to Top

Comments