PRESS RELEASE: On September 24, 2017 at 3:18 PM Fernandina Beach Police Officers, Fernandina Beach Fire/Rescue and the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of two swimmers in distress during “Red Flag” conditions at Beach Access #6, which is in the 600 block of South Fletcher Avenue.
Upon arrival first responders found a 20 year old man safely out of the water, but in need of medical attention. He reported that his father was still in the water and needed to be rescued.
Rescue swimmers from Fernandina Beach Fire-Rescue, the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office, and an off-duty Fernandina Beach Lifeguard responded and began searching the rough waters. A local pilot responded to the call for assistance by circling the area looking for anyone in distress.
The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office Air Unit and the United States Coast Guard also arrived in the area in support of the search for the missing swimmer.
At 4:50 PM, an hour and a half after the first report, the drowning victim was located in the surf about 75’ south of where he had last been seen. Christopher Brian Murray, 49 years of age of Fernandina Beach, was pulled from the surf and pronounced deceased at the scene. The victim’s son, Cale Murray, was medically cleared by Fire/Rescue at the scene.