A father died Christmas Eve while trying to save his young daughter from the clutches of the ocean in Carmel, authorities said.
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection received a call at 12:28 p.m. Tuesday that two swimmers had been washed out to sea at Carmel River State Beach. A father and daughter had been playing in the lagoon near the rest of their family when the current swept the girl’s inflatable raft toward the mouth of the Carmel River and into the ocean, officials said.
Cal Fire, California State Park lifeguards, the Coast Guard and the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office launched a search for the pair.
Rescue boats found the girl about half a mile away about 20 minutes later and transported her to a local hospital, where she was treated for hypothermia and exposure. The girl’s father was found nearly an hour and half after his daughter. He was unresponsive and was pronounced dead after being taken to a hospital.
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