A Louisiana teenager claims to have spoken with God while stranded for more than 10 hours alone in the ocean after he was apparently dragged out to sea.
Blake Spataro, 19, was doing some light swimming while visiting St. Simon Island off the coast of Georgia on Wednesday when he was suddenly yanked into the Atlantic ocean.
Spataro said he desperately tried to call for help, but no one was around to hear his pleas.
Blake Spataro (M) said he desperately tried to call for help, but no one was around to hear his pleas as he was being dragged into the ocean by a violent tide
‘I didn’t want to die out there. I was talking to God the entire night,’ Spataro said.
According to WJAX-TV, Spataro’s family contacted the US Coast Guard who went on a frantic search for the teenager as he was left stranded in the middle of the sea, floating on his back when his arms got tired.
On the verge of giving up, Spataro said that he was revitalized after spotting lights from a nearby Coast Guard ship.
Jay Wiggins (Pictured) said he was thrilled to announced that Spataro was being treated in the hospital and was safe
He managed to fight through crashing waves until finally landing on the shore of a golf course a few miles from St. Simon Island.
‘I wanted to live. I thought I was too young to die, and I simply didn’t want to end there,’ Spataro said.
‘I am truly blessed to be alive today,’ he said.
Spataro’s mother, Janice – who had not accompanied her son and ex-husband to the Island – said that she knew intuitively that her son had been lost at sea when the Coast Guard called.
‘I knew he was in the water. I felt it,’ Janice Dansby Spataro told Fox News.
‘I prayed to God all night long. I was praying, and I reached out on social media to ask for prayer because there’s power in prayer.’
After confirming that Spataro was being treated in the hospital, Director of Glynn County Emergency Management Agency Jay Wiggins sent out a social media post expressing his delight that the teenager was found safe.
Spataro, 19, was doing some light swimming while visiting St. Simon Island (pictured) off the coast of Georgia with his father
‘The opportunity to speak with the young man’s father and let our public safety partners know the positive outcome of this situation made my day, and I wanted to share it with all of you,’ Wiggins said in a Facebook post.
Justin Irwin, senior chief with the U.S. Coast Guard in Brunswick, said that he visited Spataro in the hospital, who was recovering from dehydration and exhaustion.
‘I’ve been in the Coast Guard for 18 years, and I have never seen anything like this,’ Irwin said.
Asked by WJAX-TV to sum up the experience, Spataro said: ‘Worst vacation ever, but also my most exciting ever.’
On the verge of giving up, Spataro said that he was revitalized after spotting lights from a nearby Coast Guard ship
He managed to fight through crashing waves until finally landing on the shore of a golf course a few miles from St. Simon Island