Teen Ripped Away by Current Survived by 'Talking to God' While Stranded in Ocean 10 Hours


After a frightening misadventure at sea, a teenager from Louisiana is thankful to be alive. Blake Spataro, 19, was on vacation when he suddenly found himself at the mercy of the Atlantic ocean.

On July 10, Spataro said he was in shallow waters at St. Simon Island, Georgia. The next thing he knew, a powerful riptide yanked his helpless body out to sea.

Spataro screamed and hollered for help, but the sound of the wind and waves silenced his cries. Spataro spent 10 hours stranded in the Atlantic, trying to conserve energy by floating on his back.

Spataro said his faith gave him strength as he spent the night alone.

“I didn’t want to die out there,” Spataro said. “I was talking to God the entire night.”

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Meanwhile, the U.S. Coast Guard launched a search to try and locate the missing teen. His father, Kirk Spataro, spent the night frantically searching the shorelines, screaming his son’s name.

Spataro’s mother, Janice Dansby Spataro, was not on the trip with her son. When she found out he was missing, Janice had a strong feeling her son was in the ocean.

Janice, too, relied on her faith to calm her anxiety and pray for her son. She spent the night in the same manner as her son — praying to God.

“I knew he was in the water — I felt it,” Janice said.

“I prayed to God all night long,” she continued. “I was praying, and I reached out on social media to ask for prayer because there’s power in prayer.”

Spataro said his hopes of a rescue were waning when he saw the distant lights of a Coast Guard boat.

Encouraged to know that people were indeed searching for him, Spataro had the renewed strength to keep swimming, until he ended up on a golf course a few miles from St. Simon Island.

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“I wanted to live,” Spataro said. “I thought I was too young to die, and I simply didn’t want to end there.”

Once he made it to shore, Spataro managed to get the help he needed. He called his family to say he was alive, and went to a hospital to be checked out.

Spataro made it out relatively unscathed, other than slight dehydration. He deemed his vacation the “worst ever” — but also the most exciting.

“I am truly blessed to be alive today,” Spataro said.

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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