The mother of three lost all of her children, her husband, and other members of her family after their duck boat capsized in Missouri.
The tragic incident happened on July 19th, where Tia Coleman lost nine members of her family. As she struggled to save her own life, she was also desperate to save her three kids.
On July 22nd, a press conference was held at the Cox Medical Center Branson, where Tia was admitted after the incident.
CNN recorded the interview as Tia tried to recall what was going through her mind when their duck boat capsized.
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“I had my son right next to me. But when the water filled up the boat, I could no longer see. I couldn’t feel anybody, I couldn’t see, I just remember, ‘I gotta get out, I gotta get out,’” said the survivor.
Tia fought and swam with all her might to reach the water’s surface after their boat plunged on the bottom of Table Rock Lake.
At the time, Tia shared all she did while swimming up was pray that she would be able to find her children in time.
Because of the accident, Tia lost her husband, Glenn Coleman, 40, and her three children, Reece Coleman, 9, Evan Coleman, 7, and Arya Coleman, 1.
Tia’s other family members who passed away were Ervin Coleman, 76, Horace Coleman, 70, Belinda Coleman, 69, Angela Coleman, 45, Maxwell Coleman, 2.
Aside from Tia, her 13-year-old nephew also survived.
While talking to FOX59 via phone call on the next day after the tragedy, Tia revealed that the captain suggested that the family won’t be needing life jackets and that they shouldn’t worry.
Tia said, “So nobody grabbed them because we listened to the captain as he told us the safety [rules].”
She claimed that a lot of lives could have been spared if they had just worn life jackets.
“I felt like, if I was able to get a life jacket, I could have saved my babies because they could have at least floated up to the top and somebody could have grabbed them,” she also said during the press conference.