A 62-year-old man who went in the ocean to help his 10-year-old grandson who got into trouble in the surf at Hanna Park on Wednesday was pulled from the water but died at a hospital.
Rescuers said Paul Demshar had a pulse when he was flown to Shands Jacksonville Medical Center. Police said he died a short time later. The boy, who was also pulled from the water is OK.
Police said Demshar (pictured, below) went into the water to save his 10-year-old grandson, who was in distress.
A surfer brought Demshar in on a surfboard.
Chas Riggleman, 24, said he was on the beach with his girlfriend when they heard screaming and saw the boy swept away in a rip current and his grandpa's arms waving.
Riggleman said he ran out and jumped in the water. He said the boy's grandma had also gone in to try to save boy and the grandfather was further out.
Riggleman said the boy's grandmother told him her husband had a torn rotator cuff and couldn't swim. Riggleman said he went out there and saw Demshar's face was blue, and he held his head above water.
"I obviously felt like I didn't do enough," Riggleman said. "How can anyone feel like they did enough if the outcome and result is what it was?"
Ron Johnson said he was on his surfboard and paddled over to Demshar, put him on his surfboard and brought him in.
"The man died on my surfboard. There's really nothing else to it. We paddled out to him," Johnson said.
Two other men then got in the water to also help.
Once Demshar was on the beach, those around, including a nurse, performed CPR, according to witnesses.
Rescue workers arrived and took over and flew him to Shands Jacksonville Medical Center.
There were no lifeguards on duty at the time.
The grandfather, grandmother and grandson are from Ashtabula, Ohio.
"It makes me hug my loved ones closer to know that life is short," Riggleman said. "I believe it was a time to be able to appreciate what you have."