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Couple, Grandchildren Rescued After Boat Sinks On Lake Hudson

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Phil and Kathy Wendt were enjoying a Thursday afternoon on lake Hudson, with their six and seven year old grandkids, when suddenly the flat bottomed air boat that Phil had built took on water. Phil and Kathy Wendt were enjoying a Thursday afternoon on lake Hudson, with their six and seven year old grandkids, when suddenly the flat bottomed air boat that Phil had built took on water.
Brian Edwards, with GRDA Police said, "All they knew is they were going into the water, and that's all the time that they had, and that's just amazing that we had this outcome." Brian Edwards, with GRDA Police said, "All they knew is they were going into the water, and that's all the time that they had, and that's just amazing that we had this outcome."
As GRDA lake patrol officers used sonar to search for their boat that sank, the emotions of how close they all came to losing their lives were sinking in, along with how important it is to wear life jackets. As GRDA lake patrol officers used sonar to search for their boat that sank, the emotions of how close they all came to losing their lives were sinking in, along with how important it is to wear life jackets.
MAYES COUNTY, Oklahoma -

Two grandparents and their young grandchildren are lucky to be alive after a fun day on the water suddenly became the most frightening moment of their lives.

Those grandparents said they have no doubt their life jackets saved their lives and the lives of their grandchildren.

Phil and Kathy Wendt were enjoying a Thursday afternoon on lake Hudson, with their six and seven year old grandkids, when suddenly the flat bottomed air boat that Phil had built took on water.

"There was just water coming in all of a sudden. He says, 'We're taking on water,'" Kathy said.

"It went down quick, I've never seen something go down so fast," Phil said.

In about a minute, the boat was gone. All four ended up in 71-degree water. Kathy is the only one who can swim, and she said she can't swim well.

All were terrified, including the children.

"They were crying and they were scared, and they were screaming, and I kept telling them to stay calm it would be okay," Kathy said.

Brian Edwards, with GRDA Police said, "All they knew is they were going into the water, and that's all the time that they had, and that's just amazing that we had this outcome."

All four survived because they each were wearing life jackets.

"I went home last night and I cried all night, because I thought about if they had not had on those life jackets, we'd be out here searching for their bodies, not for a boat," Kathy said.

The family was in the water for about 30 minutes. Kathy prayed. A fisherman heard their cries for help and rescued them.

"I was scared they were all going to fall out of their life jackets, that they were going to drown," she said.

"I didn't think I would be back there to see them again," said Phil.

As GRDA lake patrol officers used sonar to search for their boat that sank, the emotions of how close they all came to losing their lives were sinking in, along with how important it is to wear life jackets.

"They can't be replaced," Phil said.

"I don't know what I would have done if I'd lost them," Kathy said.

Experts also say, before getting out on the water, people need to make sure their jackets are in good condition and fit properly.

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