Mom Killed, Two Kids Hurt When Captain Cut Parasailing Line In Florida Keys
By Bill Galluccio
June 1, 2022
A parasailing accident in the Florida Keys left a mother from Illinois dead and two young children injured. The woman, her 10-year-old son, and nine-year-old nephew were parasailing on a boat captained by 49-year-old Daniel Couch when a severe storm popped up.
As the high winds from the storm caused the parasail to fill with air, Couch cut the line because he was concerned it would drag the boat. With the line cut, the three were dragged for nearly a mile along the ocean water before slamming into a bridge.
John Callion, a fishing guide who was in the area, witnessed them crash into the bridge and rushed over to help. He loaded the three onto his boat and took them to paramedics. The woman was pronounced dead at the scene, and the two children were taken to the hospital.
"My heart and prayers go out to the victims, I truly did all I could do," Callion wrote in a Facebook post. "The one women was pronounced dead on arrival and the other boy that was unconscious was brought back to life by my male customer on board en route to the dock and local EMTs met us at the dock to continue lifesaving measures. In conclusion. Never take life for granted. Things can change in a second."
The Coast Guard and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission are investigating the incident.
"Our condolences are with the family and loved ones of those affected by Monday's accident," said Capt. Jason Ingram, Coast Guard Sector Key West commander. "This was a tragedy for a family seeking to enjoy their visit to the Florida Keys."
Callion also shared a video of the accident.
"So I have contemplated posting this video for multiple reasons but here it goes: this is what I saw the moment before springing into action.. I was recording because I thought the parasail boat was going to be able to take control of the situation and i was going to record a rescue. But as time went on it was clear to me that the parasail boat was in dire need of assistance.
Viewer discretion is advised."