A Tennessee woman died Sunday while scuba diving off Tavernier while a Venice, Fla., man died Saturday while snorkeling off Key Largo, says the Monroe County Sheriff's Office.
The two deaths made it three in four days on Keys waters, and apparently the fifth and six dive or snorkel deaths in Monroe County since the first year of the year.
Deputy Becky Herrin says that on Sunday, Anne Morey, 64, from Monterey, Tenn., was diving in a rock quarry in Tavernier with her 65-year-old husband, Robert.
Herrin says he told Deputy Matt Koval they got into the water together but he discovered he didn't have enough weight. His wife told him she would go ahead and dive to the bottom and wait for him there, Herrin said.
Robert Morey got more weight, then got into the water to join her about 20 minutes later. He found her about 40 feet down, not breathing. He inflated her buoyancy compensator and managed to get her to the surface, but couldn't get her ashore.
He called the Sheriff's Office and, when deputies and paramedics arrived, she was taken Mariners Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
Saturday morning, John Dowicki, 66, from Venice, on the state's west coast south of Bradenton, was snorkeling off a commercial boat out of John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park. Witnesses say he went into the water about 10 a.m. with a number of others about five miles offshore at Grecian Rocks.
Herrin said members of the vessel's crew noticed him drifting away, and yelled to him and threw him a line, but he was not responsive.
The first mate went into the water and got him, but he wasn't breathing. When he was pulled onto the boat, they began CPR. When they reached shore, deputies and paramedics met the vessel. Dowicki was pronounced dead the scene.
Autopsies on both Morey and Dowicki will be done.
On Friday, the body of Raymond Lent, 62, of Oswego, Ill., was recovered around 12:30 p.m., miles from the dive site at Davis Ledge where he was last seen the day before. Herrin said he was diving with a group that booked a morning trip from the Florida Keys Dive Center and had trouble submerging.
He swam back to the boat, then disappeared, not to be found until the next day. Cause of death is pending.