Coast Guard finds missing boaters off of Fort Pierce

Two local fishermen who spent the night clinging to their boat 12 miles off the coast of Fort Pierce, are back with their families.

 

The two men had left from the Jupiter Inlet Sunday on a fishing expedition and a rogue wave capsized their boat.

 

The Coast Guard says it's not just what they did at that moment, but also what they had done even before they left, that may have saved their lives.

 

Black and white video shot from a Coast Guard C-130 airplane that spotted 37 year-old Justyn Bradley and 39 year-old Cody Bowman of Tequesta showed them hanging on to the hull of their overturned boat.

 

"The most important thing was they were able to get ahold of their life jackets and stay on top of the vessel," said Coast Guard Commander Randy Ryan.

 

Ryan says the pair did not panic.

 

"They had water, they had snacks they were able to retrieve from a cooler once the boat capsized.  They stayed calm, they told jokes to one another to help the time pass by," added Ryan.

 

After the plane spotted the men, a good Samaritan pulled them from the water until a Coast Guard cutter arrived on the scene and then brought them back to shore.

 

Besides the life jackets, the most important thing the Coast Guard said the men did before they left was leave a "float plan" with their family members.  It told the families where they were going to be and when they were coming back.

 

"Once they didn't report in or come back to the house on time, their family notified the Coast Guard.  It essentially let our search planners out of Miami know exactly where to commence the search efforts," said Ryan.

 

Relieved family members arrived in the late morning hours Monday to take the men back home.  They did not need medical treatment.

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