Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office
Patrol Operations Bureau
St. Pete Beach Fire Department
Terry Strecker (Near Drowning Victim- Rescued)
Address: 2276 Goodwood Boulevard, Smyrna Georgia
James DiFrancesco (Rescued Strecker)
Address: 837 Military Road, Kenmore, New York
Deputies responded to a call of a distressed swimmer on St. Pete Beach. Upon arrival deputies learned that a New York man had assisted a drowning Georgia man to shore.
The incident occurred at about 6:52 p.m. on Tuesday, May 27, 2014.
The incident occurred on St. Pete Beach at about the 3600 block of Gulf Boulevard.
According to deputies, 66-year-old Terry Strecker swam from shore out to the swim bouys. Deputies say that when he was about 100 yards from shore, he became tired and could not return. Deputies say Strecker began yelling for help as he began to go under several times.
29-year-old James DiFrancesco and his wife heard the cries for help and saw Strecker beginning to go under. DiFrancesco began to swim to him. Deputies say Strecker was near exhaustion as DiFrancesco reached him. DiFrancesco was able to get him back to shore safely. His wife called 911.
St. Pete Beach Fire Department treated Strecker at the scene and kept him under observation.
Deputies say this was an isolated stretch of beach with no other persons in the area and that DiFrancesco’s quick actions likely saved Strecker’s life.