FORT MORGAN, AL (WKRG) —- Lifeguards and beach patrols had predicted something like this would happen if folks didn’t stay out of the water and Friday afternoon it did near Ponce De Leon Ct. and Bernard Ct. in Fort Morgan.
Emergency crews recovered the body of a 57-year-old man from Dallas, Texas shortly after 3:30 Friday afternoon. He had gone into the Gulf to help some children struggling to get out of the water. Overcome by the rip current and waves, he drowned. Brandy Anderson was close by on the beach. “The rescue jet ski was coming right across in front of us and the people were starting to gather in that area and the jet ski was just circling and circling and circling and then they got another one of the rescue guys on the back of the jet ski and they pulled the body out of the water.”
The waves had been huge most of the week prompting first responders to fly double red flags and patrol the beaches warning of the dangerous conditions. “It’s just me but when I see that red flag I don’t go out there,” says Evan Gates vacationing all week from Jackson, Mississippi, “I’ve been walking up and down the coast and I’ve seen it coming in and it’s pretty bad.”
Friday the weather had cleared and a lot of folks were getting in the water despite the danger says, Anderson. “Going out really far because there was a sand bar that was ankle deep pretty far out. So there was a lot of people out there we just didn’t go out there because of fear. Just didn’t want anything to happen.”
The waves have started to lay down but, rip currents remain, making the Gulf a potentially deadly place to play. “It’s cool, but it’s very, very dangerous,” says Gates. “Again, a guy died this week.”