May 12, 2014

Fort Pierce man dies while diving

A Fort Pierce man died while diving offshore of State Road 905 in Key Largo Sunday afternoon.

Witness Elnora Harllee said her son, 54 year old Mark Harllee, was diving about 150 yards from shore at 1:30 p.m. She said she and his wife, Emily, were on shore and he would surface every so often so they could see he was all right.

She said she did not see him surface for a while, so she swam out to the channel marker where he’d been diving. She reportedly found his tickle stick, but could not find him so she returned to shore and called for help.

An EMT for the Key Largo Fire Department, Brian O’Conner, arrived on scene along with two officers from the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. They all began searching for Harllee. He was found by O’Conner underwater, near the channel marker where he’d been diving.

He was pulled onto one of the FWC vessels and brought to shore, but he was pronounced dead on shore. An autopsy will be done to determine the cause of his death.

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