Official report provides new information on fatal parasailing accident
The fiancée of the Good Samaritan who jumped into action following Monday’s deadly parasailing accident remembers receiving a desperate call.
“He was pretty frantic on the call. He said, ‘Call 911 right away,’” Kasey Platt said.
Her fiancé, John Callion, works as a fishing guide and was out on his boat when he witnessed a parasail with three people attached blowing into the Old Seven Mile Bridge in Marathon.
Platt described what he said on the call to Local 10 News reporter Janine Stanwood.
“‘I just watched a parasail rope snap and I’m on my way to go try to save the people,’” Platt recalled Callion saying.
Callion spoke Wednesday morning to Good Morning America.
“I thought they had it under control first. But for a minute, my customers were like, ‘What’s going on? What are they doing?’” he said. “I’m like, ‘It looks like they’re trying to figure out a plan to rescue these people.’ And then, you know, 30 seconds goes by, which seemed much longer and nothing was changing. So then that’s when we sprung into action.”
A boat captain who rushed in to help after three people were involved in a parasailing crash in the Florida Keys is speaking out about the incident.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission released a report on the tragic accident Tuesday night.
According to the report, “The captain cut the line tethered to the three victims” because the parasail was “pegging.”
That is a phrase used to describe when a parasail turns into a sail in high winds and could potentially drag the boat.
The woman and two children were dropped and “dragged through the water by the inflated parasail…through and across the surface of the water” before colliding with the bridge, the report states.
According to the report, onboard the 31-foot boat were nine people from Schaumburg, Illinois.
Authorities identified the woman who died as Supraja Alaparthi, 33. Her 10-year-old son, Sriakshith Alaparthi, was also parasailing with her. The 7-year-old boy who was airlifted to Nikolas Children’s Hospital is Alaparthi’s nephew, identified as Vishant Sadat.
The ABC affiliate in Chicago spoke to several neighbors and friends of the victims, who said they were family members who came to Florida for a vacation.
FWC officers said Supraja Alaparthi was declared dead by the time the Good Samaritan boat captain arrived to help.
The report identified the captain of the parasailing boat as Daniel Couch, 49, who works for Lighthouse Parasail Inc., which is based in Marathon.
After Callion arrived on his boat to help, passengers performed CPR on the victims as he raced everyone to the docks at the nearby Sunset Grille restaurant.
“The kid… he was letting me know, ‘Help me, help me.’ And we got him in the boat immediately. And then we got the other kid that was unconscious. And then we got his mom in the boat,” Callion said.
Platt said her fiancé usually does his tarpon fishing off Long Key, not Marathon.
But on Monday, he decided to take clients near the Old Seven Mile Bridge.
“He was certainly put in the right place at the right time for that reason,” she said.
“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.”
Local 10 News reached out to Lighthouse Parasail Inc., and a co-owner said over the phone they are “devastated” by what happened.