FORT MYERS, Fla. — Four teenagers were swimming in the Caloosahatchee near the midpoint bridge Thursday when they got stranded in the middle of the river, according to Fort Myers Police Department one of the kids was able to swim back to get help from a man who lived nearby.
We tracked him down and he told us… he thought the whole thing was a bad joke at first.
“I opened the door, there was a kid in a swim suit and he asked if he could use our boat to pick up some friends that were stranded,” said Tom Sievert.
"At first I though it was a prank because I got a pretty old boat that’s in bad shape. I thought what teenager would want to use this boat. “
Siervert was worried his older boat wouldn't start, but luckily for the teenage boys he was able to get it working and help them all get back safely.
"They'd been out there all day and they were close to probably the middle of the midpoint bridge pilings there. He had enough gumption to swim back but it was dark by that time." he said. "But the other guys cut up their feet while they were climbing up the pilings, but they were reluctant to in the water."
He told us the tide must have been high when the kids first swam out, but by the time he got there it would have been about a four feet jump down from those pilings into the water.
Once they were back on dry land, he tells us the boys took off home before the police could show up.
"About a half way coming back a helicopter came by and we also saw a marine patrol in the distance. The first thing the boys said was our parents are going to kill us," he said. "One kid said I'm glad this happened now because we go to school next week. Had this happened in the beginning of summer I would have been grounded all vacation."
Siervert tells us he wouldn't recommend anyone go swim out there, but he's glad he could help the kids make it out of the Caloosahatchee safely.
"I told them, I said this water is pretty nasty with all the rain and I think I saw an alligator yesterday as well."