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Posted: July 11, 2017

Must-see: Beachgoers form 80-person human chain to save drowning family


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Must-see: Beachgoers form 80-person human chain to save drowning family
Long shot down the crowded beach in the midmorning sun in Panama City Beach, Florida, USA. (stock photo)

By Michelle Ewing, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

PANAMA CITY, Fla. —

Dozens of beachgoers in Panama City, Florida, teamed up to form a human chain to save a family from drowning.

>> Watch the news report from WBRC here

WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

According to the Panama City News Herald, Roberta Ursrey heard her sons shouting for help in the water Saturday. But when she and other family members swam out to save them, they also became trapped by the rip current. As the nine family members struggled in the water, Ursrey said her mother had a heart attack.

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"I honestly thought I was going to lose my family that day," Ursrey told the News Herald. "It was like, 'Oh, God, this is how I'm going.'"

But that's when Jessica Simmons of Alabama jumped in to help. She swam to the family with a boogie board as her husband and other beachgoers began to form a human chain from the shore, the News Herald reported. The good Samaritans then pulled each family member back to the beach.

 >> See the viral photo here

With all the sharing we finally got a picture. This one was from the county pier that ran out in the water! In the...

Posted by Jessica Mae Simmons on Sunday, July 9, 2017

“It was the most remarkable thing to see,” Simmons told the News Herald. “These people who don’t even know each other and they trust each other that much to get them to safety.”

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Ursrey, who said her mother was hospitalized and her nephew broke his hand, said she's grateful for her rescuers.

“These people were God’s angels that were in the right place at the right time," Ursrey told the News Herald. "I owe my life and my family’s life to them. Without them, we wouldn’t be here.”

Read more here.


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