PENSACOLA — A family of four whose boat sank in the rough waters of Pensacola Bay was rescued by a good Samaritan who performed CPR on their baby, saving her life, before taking the family to shore.

According to a report from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, on Friday, May 18 the family from East Brewton, Ala., had taken out their brand new boat, a 15-foot stick steer vessel that they had just purchased the day before, for a family outing on Pensacola Bay.

The boat’s operator, 30-year-old Russell Lassiter, told FWC officials they launched the boat from Bill Dickson Boat Launch, left Bayou Grande and headed east toward Deer Point in Gulf Breeze. They were halfway across the bay when they realized the water was too rough, so they turned around and headed back toward Bayou Grande.

On their way back, a large wave came right across their boat and swamped the entire vessel immediately, sinking it. Lassiter was thrown into the water along with, his wife, 25-year-old Shelby Shatto, and their children, a 3-year-old boy and 9-month-old girl.

Both children were wearing life jackets at the time, the report said.

The family treaded water for 25 minutes in 3- to 4-foot waves before being spotted by a sailboat operated by Michael Kirk, a catamaran charter captain. The report said Kirk struggled to get close enough to the family due to the rough waves, but was eventually able to pull all four from the water.

The baby, however, wasn’t breathing when she made it onto the sailboat, the report said. Kirk called 911 and performed CPR on the baby, getting her to breathe again before rushing them to the Pensacola Yacht Club where they were met by EMS.

The mother and baby were taken to Sacred Heart Hospital and treated for saltwater ingestion, the report said. Shatto was released the same day she was admitted, but the baby was held another day for observation.

An FWC officer who went to visit the pair in the hospital noted the baby was “alert and smiling” when he entered the family’s room.

The same officer met with Kirk a few days after the incident and thanked him for his “heroic deeds.”

By May 21, the family had returned to Alabama and the baby was continuing to see a doctor, but had “zero deficiencies.” The mother said all four family members were “doing great.”

FWC officers tried to locate the capsized vessel but were unsuccessful.