Danny Dee Dickens, 48, and his family were at the beach in Port St. Joe, Fla., when his wife became concerned that she could no longer see him in the water, according to the sheriff’s department report.
The report states two deputies responded to the beach area across the street from the 1100 block of Indian Pass Road in reference to a person drowning.
Victor Ramos, a local resident, told deputies he swam out about 200 yards and saw a man floating on his back. Ramos said he dragged him to shore to begin CPR.
Deputies reported first responders with South Gulf EMS were already on scene and in the process of taking Dickens by ambulance to Sacred Heart Hospital on the Gulf Coast in Port St. Joe.
According to the report, sometime Sunday morning Dickens’ wife, Katrina Dickens, was building sand castles with her 5-year-old daughter on the beach as she watched her husband in the ocean.
She told deputies that after waving to her husband out in the water, about five minutes went by and she looked again and saw he was further out.
She checked again and he was fine, but then a few minutes later she could no longer see him.
According to the report, she began to panic and called 911. She then spotted Ramos going by and waved him down. He located Dickens and swam out to him.
Shortly before noon on Sunday, a Gulf County paramedic pronounced Dickens deceased.
Gulf County Sheriff Joe Nugent could not be reached for comment Tuesday as to the official cause of death.