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Keith Kenerly: A Perfect Storm

Keith Kenerly was enjoying a day of deep sea fishing with friends when their boat began taking on water. Soon, they were all in the shark infested waters enduring violent storms as they prayed for rescue. Read Transcript


IT WAS JUST SECONDS.

WE WERE IN THE WATER

FLOATING WITH ALL OF THE

BAIT, ALL OF THE FISH WE

CAUGHT, THE CHUM, EVERYTHING

WAS ALL IN THE WATER.

I STAR STARTED THINKING

ABOUT, THIS IS GOING TO DRAW

IN SHARKS.

Reporter: THE SEAS WERE

GONE AS KEITH AND TWO OF HIS

BUDDIES HEADED OUT INTO THE

ATLANTIC FOR A DAY OF

DEEP-SEA FISHING.

30 MILES OUT, THE FISH WERE

BITING.

I WAS ENJOYING IT, A RED

SNAPPER WOULD TAKE OFF.

WAS AWESOME.

WE WERE THINKING AFTER WE

CHUM, LATER WE'RE GOING TO

CATCH SOME BIG SHIP.

Reporter: BUT A BOAT

THAT WAS PASSING BY WARNED

THEM ABOUT AN APPROACHING

STORM.

HE SAID HE WAS HEADING

HOME.

WE SAID WE WERE GOING TO

FISH ANOTHER HOUR AND HEAD

BACK IN.

GAVE OUR CALL SIGNS, AND HE

LEFT, AND WE WENT BACK TO

FISHING.

Reporter: AND THEN ONE

OF THEM TOLD KEITH HE

NOTICED WATER IN THE HULL.

I SAID TO KEEP FISHING

AND NOT TO WORRY ABOUT IT.

Reporter: BUT KEITH HAD

REALIZED THEY FORGOTTEN TO

TIGHTEN IT.

HE SAID, KEITH, THIS IS

REALLY SERIOUS.

AND I LOOKED BACK, AND WATER

WAS ALMOST UP TO HIS KNEES.

Reporter: KEITH KNEW

THEY WERE IN TROUBLE.

I TRIED TO GET AN S.O.S.

ON THE RADIO.

IT WAS DEBT.

AND THE MOTOR WAS GONE.

WE'VE GOT THREE MEN IN THE

BACK OF THE BOAT, AND ALL OF

THIS WATER IN IT, AND JUST A

SMALL WAVE CAME ON OVER THE

BACK, AND THE BOAT WAS IN

WATER.

WE GOT TO THE BOAT, AND SHE

WAS IN THE WATER WITH THE

BOW STICKING UP.

ONE MINUTE YOUR STANDING UP

ON SOMETHING, AND THE NEXT

MINUTE YOU'RE IN THE WATER

WITH YOUR CLOTHES ON AND IT

WAS EARLY JUNE, AND THE

WATER WAS STILL COLD.

I WENT UNDER THE VOTE THREE

OR FOUR TIMES AND GOT THREE

LIFEVESTS OUT.

BUT AFTER THREE OR FOUR

HOURS, THEY'RE SO FULL OF

WATER, YOU START TAKING THEM

OFF BECAUSE THEY BRING YOU

DOWN.

Reporter: THE MEN TOOK

TURNS TAKING CONTROL OF THE

BOW.

MY BIGGEST FEAR WAS, ARE

WE GOING TO BE FOUND.

I HADN'T TOLD ANYONE WE WERE

GOING FISHING.

Reporter: AND TO MAKE

THINGS WORSE, THE BAIT AND

CHUM WAS ALSO IN THE WATER

AND ATTRACTING UNWANTED

GUESTS.

I SAID, WE HAVE SHARKS.

THEY'RE IN WITH US.

THEY'RE CIRCLING US.

AND MORE SHARKS SHOWED UP

AND STARTED GETTING MOYER

VIOLENT AND RUNNING INTO

US.

I WAS JUST WORRIED ABOUT US

BEING EATEN.

THAT'S WHEN I SAID, WE'RE

NOT GOING TO MAKE IT.

Reporter: FINALLY, THE

STORM WAS UPON THEM.

I BELIEVE THAT WAS THE

LONGEST NIGHT OF MY LIFE.

YOU COULD NOT SEE WHAT WAS

OUT THERE.

WE HAD THREE BIG STORMS,

LIGHTNING STORMS.

Reporter: FACING DEATH,

KEITH STARTED PRAYING.

I STARTED PRAYING, ASKING

THE LORD TO FORGIVE ME FOR

THE THINGS I HAD DONE IN MY

LIFE.

I ASKED HIM TO FORGIVE ME

AND IF HE COULD, TAKE US OUT

THERE.

I WASN'T READY TO DIE.

Reporter: LATER THAT

NIGHT, THE STORM SUBSIDED.

ONE OF KEITH'S FRIENDS WHO

WAS AN ATHEIST HAD BEEN

WATCHING HIM.

AND HE WAS LIKE, IT'S

LIKE YOU'RE SOMEWHERE ELSE.

I SAID, I'M PRAYING TO MY

LORD, TO OPEN UP THE GATES

OF HEAVEN AND BRING ME IN.

HE SAID, YOU KNOW, KEITH, I

NEVER BELIEVED IN ANY OF

THAT.

AND I SAID REALLY?

AND HE SAID YEAH.

AND SO WE TALKED SOME MORE

AND WE PRAYED OVER IT, AND

HE ACCEPTED JESUS AS HIS

LORD AND SAVIOR RIGHT THERE

ON THE WATER.

Reporter: THE SHARKS

CONTINUED CIRCLING THEM

THROUGH THE NIGHT.

THE NEXT MORNING A SCHOOL OF

DOLPHINS APPEARED.

DOLPHINS WOULD SHOW UP,

AND THE SHARKS WOULD LEAVE.

BUT AS SOON AS THE DOLPHINS

WOULD LEAVE, THE SHARKS

WOULD COME BACK IN ON US.

Reporter: THE HOURS OF

STRUGGLING AND EXPOSURE TO

THE SUN AND SALTWATER WERE

TAKING A HEAVY TOLL.

YOU COULDN'T HARDLY TALK

BECAUSE YOUR TONGUE WAS

SWOLLEN FROM THE SUN AND THE

SALTWATER.

I THOUGHT, IT WOULD BE GREAT

TO STAND ON THE GROUND,

STAND ON THE EARTH AGAIN.

Reporter: MEANWHILE,

THE COAST GUARD HAD LAUNCHED

A SEARCH FOR THE MISSING

MEN.

BUT ANOTHER DAY HAD PASSED,

AND THE EXHAUSTED FISHERMEN

WERE CONVINCED THEY WOULD

DIE.

WE WERE STILL FIGHTING

JUST TO STAY AFLOAT, AND THE

BOAT IS COMING APART.

AND IT IS ALMOST GETTING

DARK AGAIN.

WE'RE GOING TO EITHER DROWN

OR STARVE OR BE EATEN BY

THESE SHARKS. BUT I SAID

NOBODY KNOWS WHAT WE'RE AT

AND WE'RE GOING TO DIE.

Reporter: THEN FINALLY

KEITH SAW A BOAT HEADING

THEIR WAY.

HE BROKE UP AN ANTENNA TO

CATCH THEIR EYE.

THAT'S WHAT CAUGHT THEIR

EYE, THAT ANTENNA WITH A

HANHANDKERCHIEF ON IT.

Reporter: AND THEY WERE

RESCUED BY THE LIFEGUARD.

ON THE WAY BACK, WE

TALKED, AND I SAID I KNOW

THE LORD WAS TAKING CARE OF

US.

THE LORD DIDN'T LET THE

SHARKS OPEN THEIR MOUTHS,

EITHER.

Reporter: THE MEN WERE

TREATED FOR EXTREME SUN

EXPOSURE AND DEHYDRATION.

FOR KEITH, THE TRAUMATIC

EXPERIENCE HAUNTED HIM FOR

YEARS.

AFTER WE WERE RESCUED, I

WOULD WAKE UP IN THE MORNING

AND BECAUSE OF ALL THE

STRESS AND WHAT HAPPENED OUT

THERE, I WOULD JUST START

CRYING AND BALLED FOR NO

REASON.

Reporter: IT TOOK A

WHILE, BUT HE RECOVERED.

TODAY HE OWNS A SUCCESSFUL

BUSINESS SELLING WAR ITEMS.

I AM NOT WORTHY.

I NEVER WAS WORTHY.

AND I DON'T THINK I WILL

EVER BE WORTHY OF THE LOVE

THAT THE LORD HAS FOR ME OR

ANYONE ELSE.

IF HE CAN LOVE ME, I KNOW HE

CAN LOVE EVERYBODY ELSE OUT THERE.

EMBED THIS VIDEO


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