When the wedding day rolls around, the bride and groom have spent hours of planning and preparation to make sure the moment is absolutely perfect. But not even the most organized bride or the highest-paid wedding planner can prepare for every single contingency that might occur. So after Zac Edwards married the love of his life, Cindy, and they were posing for pictures on the beach, something incredible happened the put the wedding on pause.
While photo after photo was being snapped, Zac saw something alarming out in the water. A young man was drowning. The 18-year-old in the seawater was floundering and fighting for breath, and Zac knew he had to help.
The heroic groom stripped off his wedding clothes and then dove into the water. As a Coast Guard petty officer, Zac knows a thing or two about saving lives and protecting people in the water. This was an example of the person being in the right place at the right time.
The moment came as a shock to Cindy. One moment she’s posing for pictures with her 37-year-old husband and the next moment he is stripping down to dive into the water after another woman screamed for help for a drowning teen.
Later, after the heroic deed was done, Zac told Good Morning America that it was really Cindy Edwards, 32, his lovely bride, who urged him to put his Coast Guard skills to use and save the teen. He would have done it, but she urged him to go faster.
“You have to listen to your wife, or you’re in trouble.”
Zac stripped off his shirt and was about to remove his pants. But Cindy realized how dire the situation was. There wasn’t time for Zac to save his wedding clothes. He had to go in with his pants on.
Jamel Robinson, 18, was the victim. He had been out in the waves having some fun on a boogie board when he suddenly got pulled out into the water. The current was very strong, and he could not swim back to shore.
Zac swam out to meet Jamel and help keep him afloat while they waited for rescuers to come. It didn’t take too long for the rescuers of the Orange Beach Fire Department and the Orange Beach Surf Rescue to come out with their jet ski and help the pair back to the beach. They happened to be nearby and could help quickly.
Zac helped the rescuers keep Jamel afloat as they took him to shore.
“Cindy and I were taking our photos together by the water, and we were just wrapping them up when a woman told us there was a teenager in the water struggling. You could just tell by the look on his face he was in difficulty. When we first saw him, he was about 50 yards out. I took off my shirt, but my wife said I didn’t have time to take off my pants. I ran into the water… Eventually, I reached him, but we were about half a football field away from the shore. He just kept saying ‘I can’t breathe.’”
Good thing this groom went into hero mode and saved the teen.