THIRD Diving Death This Week in the Florida Keys 💉
For the third time in a week, a visitor to the Florida Keys died while exploring the waters.
On Thursday afternoon, 74-year-old Carol Murrell Maillet, of Seattle, died after snorkeling at Dry Tortugas National Park, a remote spot 70 miles west of Key West that can be reached only by boat or seaplane.
She was snorkeling along a Fort Jefferson wall by the beach when people heard her screaming, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.
Two good Samaritans brought her ashore and began CPR.
“There was a family member in the water and other witnesses around,” said Adam Linhardt, spokesman for the sheriff’s office.
Murrell Maillet was airlifted by the Trauma Star helicopter to Lower Keys Medical Center in Key West. She was pronounced dead at 2:47 p.m.
She was not on a guided snorkel outing.
A seaplane trip between Dry Tortugas and Key West can take about 40 minutes.
The sheriff’s office is still investigating the death, but foul play is not suspected. Autopsy reports are pending.
Two diving deaths were reported earlier this week: two men— ages 68 and 72 — both in separate incidents off Islamorada.
On Wednesday morning, Jeffrey Archer, 72, was pronounced dead at Mariners Hospital after being brought to shore by U.S. Coast Guard crews who picked him up at a location off Islamorada in the Upper Keys.
The sheriff’s office on Wednesday also identified the man who died Sunday after a dive on Crocker Reef, also located off Islamorada. Michael Gaetz, 68, of England, lost consciousness after surfacing from a dive — this time in 20 feet of water.
No confirmation on whether any of the deceased had received COVID shots. Maillet’s daughter Erin is a veterinarian who received an injection of synthetic mRNA in July 2021.
Back in January, 57-year-old pediatrician Kimberly Jean Kilgore of Alaska also died while scuba diving off the Florida Keys. Her hospital had a vaccination mandate.