Ventura County

Surfer Survives Near Drowning Thanks to Help of Good Samaritans

Surfer thankful to be alive after surfing accident

OXNARD, Calif. - A man who almost died in a surfing accident is out of the hospital Monday night.

Now he is thanking a group of good Samaritans that came to his rescue and saved his life.

"They are part of a miracle.  All my friends here where I am staying are calling me the miracle man.  I just really don't know what to say just that they are such really great people and they didn't give up.  They are just part of a miracle and I thank them a lot," said Cameron Schwartzkopf.

Cameron Schwartzkopf was surfing off Mandalay beach in Oxnard Saturday morning when something went wrong.

"I don't know whether I hit my head. I have had a few seizures in the past so I don't know if I had another seizure or whatever it was but I just went out and needed help," said Schwartzkopf.

A surfer on the beach spotted Schwartzkopf's body facedown in the water.  At that time he was about 60 yards from the beach.

That surfer and another surfer ran into the water to get Schwartzkopf to shore.  The surfers estimate Schwartzkopf was floating lifeless in the water for 10 to 15 minutes 

Once Shwartzkopf's body was ashore, a woman and Larry Manion started CPR.

"He was in very bad shape he was purple, there was no breathing, he was coughing up a lot of blood and water from his lungs.  His face was just completely without life his body was limp.  I honestly believe his chances for living were limited.  It was really bad," said Manion.

Schwartzkopf was taken to the hospital.  No one knew who he was for several hours because all he had on was his wetsuit with no ID.  Once he became conscious he was able to write down his name for the nurses.

Just three days after the accident Schwartkopf is doing just fine.  He is even healthy enough to go for a quick bike ride. 

"I am just happy that God extended that grace to me the other day, because people who are in the water breathing water for that long don't survive, so it's definitely a miracle," said Schwartzkopf.

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