Teens on capsized boat manage to climb on top of overturned hull, wait for rescue

A Florida Keys marine deputy rescued three teenage boys from a rented boat that had capsized about 2 1/2 miles offshore of Little Torch Key from taking on water, police said.


Zack Sowder, 18, Jacob Sowder, 16, and Brent Shishido, 18, all of Orange County, California, managed to climb on top of the 22-foot-long vessel’s overturned hull and call 911 on a cellphone on Tuesday, according to Monroe County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Deputy Becky Herrin.

As all three sat on the hull, Marine Deputy James Hager found the boys and pulled each to safety.

In provided photos, none of the three is seen wearing a life jacket.

“Life jackets were trapped under the boat,” according to a Facebook post by the Monroe Sheriff’s Office. “Fortunately they knew their rough location. They were lucky they had a cell signal.”

One of the rescued teens maintained his sense of humor after the brush with danger.

“Make sure your bilge works before you run five miles offshore and realize it’s too late,” Zack Sowder tweeted Tuesday night, along with two photos of the incident. “Other than that great day on the water.”

The teens’ boat had been anchored on the oceanside where the depths reach 30 feet when it began taking on water.

“By the time they got the anchor line cut, the boat had taken on too much water and capsized,” Herrin said.

Hager, who had just pulled his patrol boat out of the water and had finished cleaning it, got the call over the police radio at about 3:15 p.m.

“He quickly put the boat back in the water,” Herrin…

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