Father dies after rescuing drowning son during family vacation – Rest in peace

"His last act of service was rescuing his own son. We have no words. Rest In Peace, brother."


A holiday at the beach turned into a tragedy for a Mississippi family after the father lost his life while saving his son from drowning. The horrific incident took place on July 22 in Sandestin, Florida.

The man in question is William Nichols, director of Desoto County’s Search and Rescue unit. According to reports, rip currents caught the young boy off guard and Nichols rushed to save him, but things took the wrong turn. So after he managed to get his son to safety, Nicholas was pulled back by the currents.

People who were vacationing there and witnessed the incident rushed to help and got some paddle boards into the water but the currents were way too strong for something to be done.

Sadly, this hero of a father died and his lifeless body was taken off the water some 30 minutes after he disappeared.

Nicholas was an excellent swimmer and new the waters. However, beach-goers usually rely on flags to determine the safety of the water, and this private beach didn’t have any flags.

“We have no words to express our devastation,” wrote the Walton County Sheriff’s Department on their Facebook page. “Our hearts go out to his family and our brothers and sisters in Desoto County. Rest In Peace, brother. We have the watch.”

We are very sorry for the loss. Rest in Peace Nicholas. You are a hero!