NATIONAL NEWS

Authorities in Florida are investigating the deaths of two cave divers

Jun 23, 2022, 8:39 PM | Updated: Jun 25, 2022, 8:52 pm
Authorities in Florida are investigating the deaths of two cave divers at a wildlife park. The Hern...
Authorities in Florida are investigating the deaths of two cave divers at a wildlife park. The Hernando County Sheriff's Office shared this photo of the area near the Buford Springs Cave where the cave divers died. (Hernando County Sheriff's Office via CNN)
(Hernando County Sheriff's Office via CNN)

(CNN) — Authorities in Florida are investigating the deaths of two cave divers at a wildlife park, the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office said.

Deputies were alerted Wednesday afternoon after one of three teenagers who were spending the day at the Buford Springs Cave called 911, the sheriff’s office said.

The teens, who arrived at the park earlier that morning, had talked with the two divers before the men got into the water, authorities said.

When the two men came back up, they talked with one another and then dove back in, authorities said.

“The juveniles believed the discussion was in regards to going back down into the ‘cave’ and whether or not they had enough air in their tanks to complete their dive,” the sheriff’s office added. “One of the divers is believed to have mentioned that he possibly had a leak in his tank.”

Shortly after, the group of teens saw one of the divers floating face down and when they checked on him, received no response. When authorities arrived, the diver was deceased, according to the sheriff’s office.

Members of a specialized cave diving rescue team responded to the scene and found the second diver, also deceased, more than 130 feet below the surface, authorities said.

“Neither of the divers had any obvious signs of trauma and both appeared to have the appropriate diving equipment. It is unknown at this time if all the equipment was working properly,” the sheriff’s office added.

Authorities identified the two divers as Todd Richard McKenna, 52, and Stephen Roderick Gambrell, 63.

The sheriff’s office said the investigation into the deaths is ongoing.

The cave is located in the Chassahowitzka Wildlife Park in Weeki Wachee, roughly an hour north of Tampa.


The-CNN-Wire™ & © 2022 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

National News

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 26: Bleu speak onstage during the 2022 BET Awards at Microsoft Theat...
JONATHAN LANDRUM Jr. AP Entertainment Writer

Stars use BET Awards stage to criticize Roe v. Wade ruling

Big stars used the BET Awards stage to strongly criticize the Supreme Court’s recent decision to strip away women’s constitutional protection for abortion.
1 day ago
police, crime, police tape...
Tina Burnside and Jarrod Wardwell, CNN

3 children dead after 911 caller said mother tried to stab them during a house fire in Georgia

Three children are dead and their mother is facing murder charges after allegedly trying to stab her children during a house fire in Georgia.
1 day ago
FILE PHOTO (Idaho State Police/Facebook)...
Michael Houck

Kearns woman killed in two vehicle crash in Idaho

A Kearns woman has died after being hit by a car while on a motorcycle in Idaho Saturday.
1 day ago
A passenger looks through a window at Dubai International Airport on January 01, 2022 in Dubai, UAE...
Chuck Johnston, CNN

More than 700 flights canceled Sunday

At least 730 flights were canceled across the United States on Sunday evening, according to the flight-tracking website FlightAware
1 day ago
Officers respond to the scene after a vehicle fleeing police struck five people in Brooklyn, killin...
Andy Rose and Kiely Westhoff, CNN

Vehicle fleeing police kills a grandmother and injures 4 people, including an 8-year-old

A grandmother was killed and an 8-year-old boy was among four others injured when they were struck by a vehicle fleeing New York police Saturday night.
1 day ago
FILE (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)...
Associated Press

Tie in Alabama GOP race means winner to be selected by lot

Alabama's Republican Party has declared a tie in the primary race for a state Senate seat and says the winner will be chosen by lot.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

hand holding 3d rendering mobile connect with security camera for security solutions...
Les Olson

Wondering what security solutions are right for you? Find out more about how to protect your surroundings

Physical security helps everyone. Keep your employees, clients, and customers safe with security solutions that protect your workplace.
Many rattan pendant lights, hay hang from the ceiling.Traditional and simple lighting....
Lighting Design

The Best Ways to Style Rattan Pendant Lighting in Your Home

Rattan pendant lights create a rustic and breezy feel, and are an easy way to incorporate this hot trend into your home decor.
Earth day 2022...
1-800-GOT-JUNK?

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
Authorities in Florida are investigating the deaths of two cave divers