The two divers that died in an accident Wednesday were trying out new equipment received as a Christmas present.
According to the Hernando County Sheriff's Office, Dillon Sanchez and his father Darrin Spivey were trying out new dive equipment Sanchez had received as a Christmas present. The two went cave diving at the Eagle Nest Sink in the Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge.
According to friends, Spivey was a certified diver but not a certified cave diver. Sanchez was not a certified diver.
Spivey's fiancee, Holly King, contacted authorities after not being able to reach him by phone and driving to the wildlife refuge and locating their car.
The father and son were last seen by a hunter around 11 a.m., officials said. The hunter later told authorities the two were suited up and prepared to dive. The hunter returned around 6:30 p.m. and did not see the divers anywhere. He said the car was still there.
According to authorities, Sanchez's body was located by underwater recovery divers in about 70 feet of water, and Spivey's in 127 feet inside the cave. Forensics technicians responded to the scene, took photographs and collected equipment, which will be evaluated at a later time.
The medical examiner took custody of the bodies. No further information has been released about Spivey and Sanchez. The investigation is ongoing.
The system of underwater caves at Eagle Nest Sink is well known for its beauty, as well as danger. The system of caves, which attracts divers from all over the world, has been called an underwater Grand Canyon.
Multiple divers have died there during the past 30 years.
The danger of the caves is described on a sign adjacent to the wooden ramp that leads into the murky water: Cave diving in this area is extremely dangerous - even life threatening. Do not dive unless you are a certified cave diver.
One of the recovery cave divers that recovered the bodies said off camera it looked like the father and son ran out of air.
Sanchez was a student at Hernando High School in Brooksville.