The survivors of a duck boat accident in Missouri are now trying their best to pick up the pieces after 17 people died on a tourist boat that sank due to a heavy storm last Thursday, July 19. One of them, Tia Coleman, recalled the traumatic moment as she struggled to stay afloat in the cold lake that day.
Tourists were enjoying their ride on an amphibious duck boat operated by Ride the Ducks near Branson, Mo. The boat was caught in the middle of Table Rock Lake during a powerful storm and eventually sank along with its passengers, according to Time Magazine.
"God must have something for me because there's no way I should be here," Tia Coleman said about her life after the tragedy, which claimed the other nine of her relatives. They were out on a family trip that day when they decided to take a tour on Thursday aboard one of the boats plying the scenic Table Rock Lake.
She and her nephew were the only ones to have made it out alive that day out of their family who rode the boat. The incident would go on to claim 17 lives out of the 31 passengers that were on board at the time.
"I lost all my children, I lost my husband, I lost my mother in law, I lost my father in law, I lost my uncle, I lost my sister in law - she was my sister - and I lost my nephew," she listed out the family members that she lost in that grim accident from her hospital bed, as quoted by Reuters.
Struggling to swim in the lake's cold, deep water, Coleman's thoughts were on her children at the time. "I said, 'Lord, please, I've got to get to my babies. I've got to get to my babies," she recalled.
She also recalled that they not did put on life jackets for the passengers after a comment from the captain. "You won't need them so we didn't grab them," the captain said, according to Coleman.