PONCE INLET, Fla. – An off-duty Belle Isle Police Department officer is being credited for helping to save the life of a man who became unresponsive while face down in rough surf Memorial Day weekend.
According to a Facebook post from the department, Belle Isle Police Deputy Chief Travis Grimm was at Ponce Inlet with his family on May 24, swimming in the ocean with his brother about 20 feet away from a man and a woman who were boogie boarding.
Grimm knew something was wrong a few minutes later when one of the boogie boards hit him and he looked over to see the woman pointing at her father-in-law, who was face down in “extremely rough surf.”
The deputy chief and his brother brought the man to shore and performed CPR for 15 minutes until an ambulance arrived to take the man to a hospital, where he remains in the intensive care unit.
Beachgoers who witnessed the bravery gave Grimm, his brother and an emergency room doctor who also helped a standing ovation.
"The gentleman survived and is in the ICU at this time. He suffered a fairly severe injury, which is likely the reason he became unresponsive in the water. He would have drowned if it weren’t for your Deputy Chief, and we are very grateful he was there,” Volusia County Beach Safety Ocean Rescue officials said.