Off-duty deputies rescue 3 after boat sinks off Port Richey

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A couple of off-duty Pasco County deputies enjoying a day on the water still managed to save lives when the spotted some boaters in trouble.

Body camera video shows the second part of the heroic rescue, but before on-duty deputies showed up, two off-duty deputies, who were deep sea fishing in the gulf, west of Port Richey, spotted some boaters in trouble, just in time.

“I saw something that didn’t look right,” said Deputy William Gay. “I was like, ‘Yeah, they are waving. There’s people in the water.’”

There were three people in the distance. Deputies Sean Powers and William Gay saw the men, whose boat had already sunk, so they pulled anchor and took off.

“There was no waiting. Just go. Just go,” Gay said.

They were able to pull the men, who weren’t wearing life jackets, from the water. One of them had a head injury.

“They were very worn out. The first guy we got on, they could barely get up the staircase. We had to help him up,” Gay said.

A Pasco County Sheriff’s Office Marine Unit showed up and took the men to shore. The sheriff’s office reminds anyone on the water to make sure they have a life jacket.

“Take it out of the plastic. Learn how to put it on. You have 30-90 seconds to put it on from when water starts coming in the boat,” said Gay.

The three men pulled from the water said it was a hard way to learn that lesson, but they are thankful.

“God put me there in the right place at the right time. That’s how I look at it. If we weren’t there, who knows?” Gay said.