Coast Guard rescues Xenia native, 2 others and dog in Gulf of Mexico

Group on fishing trip abandoned boat after it filled with water

Coast Guard rescues Xenia native, 2 others and dog in Gulf of Mexico
Nate Stutes (Contributed Photo)

CLEARWATER BEACH, Florida — A Xenia native who works as a fisherman in Florida was rescued after the boat he was in began taking on water in the Gulf of Mexico last week.

Nate Stutes, 23, was in the first week of a four-week fishing trip with his 1-year-old German Shepard Ella and two others when the boat started to take on water.

Stutes told News Center 7 after the group abandoned ship, they boarded a raft and used a satellite phone to call for help. The U.S. Coast Guard found the group about an hour later approximately 165 nautical miles from Clearwater Beach, Florida. The rescue was recorded by the Coast Guard and posted to their social media page last week.

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“The whole underneath of the boat filled up and at that point, we’re like man. It sucks that we’re losing the boat but we gotta go. It’s our lives”, Stutes said. “We didn’t want to die so we cut our losses and jumped ship. That was it.”

Stutes said the rescue was emotional and difficult because he had to try to keep his dog, Ella, calm.

"It was my job to hold on to Ella as I was getting dragged 100 feet under the chopper", Stutes said. She was freaking out. She was so scared. She covered me with scratches but I wasn't letting go so I took it."

Coast Guard rescues 3 people, dog offshore Apalachicola, Florida

Outstanding job to U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater and Coast Guard Sector New Orleans for rescuing 3 men and a dog more than 70 nautical miles off Apalachicola, Florida!! "Abandoning ship into the life raft and bringing a satellite phone was the absolute right decision," said Lt. Cmdr. Corrie Sergent, search and rescue mission coordinator at Sector Mobile. "Thanks to their quick actions, the Coast Guard was able to locate them and bring them safely home to their families."

Posted by U.S. Coast Guard Southeast on Thursday, May 7, 2020

Stutes is the son of Xenia Police Division, Captain Chris Stutes. Both father and son told News Center 7 anchor, Gabrielle Enright, they are grateful to the U.S. Coast Guard for their actions.

Stutes said despite the ordeal he and Ella plan to return to the water to fish as soon as next week.