January 2, 2012

Snorkeling accident offshore of Marathon

Marathon – A man was airlifted to Miami after a snorkeling accident offshore of Marathon Sunday.

According to reports by Deputy Nancy Torrios, she responded to the Seven Mile Marina to meet a U.S. Coast Guard vessel coming in with a man who’d stopped breathing while he was snorkeling at Sombrero Reef.

According to witness reports, the crew of the vessel “Spirit” had taken a group snorkeling at the reef. When they arrived, they saw a man floating on the water nearby. They pulled him from the water, started CPR and called the Coast Guard for assistance. The Coast Guard responded and brought the man into shore, continuing CPR. It was later found that the victim, 28 year old Vinayak Devasthali, was from another snorkeling vessel, the “Starfish”, which was also at the reef that day.

The crew of the “Starfish” heard on the marine radio about the snorkeler in distress and did a head count of passengers; when they realized they were missing one, they also responded to shore. Devasthali was with a group of people on board the “Starfish” visiting from Massachusetts and New Hampshire; it is unclear from the deputy’s report where Devasthali is from.

Paramedics met the Coast Guard and took the victim to Fishermen’s Hospital. He was revived and airlifted to Kendall Regional Medical Center where he is currently being treated in the ICU unit.


  1. What is the update for the surivor? My sister and I first spotted him and swam out to help. Can you post an update please?

  2. @Tanja: can i have your email id please? He was my brother. I want to have a talk with you or please contact me at devasthaliabhishek3@gmail.com
    thank you.

  3. Abhishek - I sent a message to the email above.

  4. I was on the starfish snorkel trip that he was on. I have some serious safety concerns with this company!