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Date of Issue: August 15, 2010

2 drown in Anna Maria waters

The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office reports that at approximately 3:30 p.m. today, deputies responded to a possible drowning in the Gulf of Mexico at the north end of Anna Maria Island. Other and Manatee County marine rescue and emergency personnel also responded.

Two subjects were transported to Blake Medical Center where they were pronounced dead.

The two victims have been identified as Gerardo Hernandez, date of birth unknown, but believed to be in his 60s, and Josefina Pardo, 71.

The MSCO reports two other subjects were hospitalized in stable condition with non life-threatening injuries. 

The MCSO stated the victims were apparently visiting Anna Maria from the Tampa area.

According to witnesses, one of the men was in the water, possibly on a raft, when he began experiencing some difficulty.

The sheriff’s office reports members of the family went into the water to try and help the victim. At that time, the second man, a family member, apparently was caught in a strong current. The two victims were brought ashore and transported to the hospital.