Hurricane Irma has brought about record flooding, and has left tragic deaths and destruction in its wake. Both people and pets have been affected by the recent spate of tropical storms. But there’s another segment of the world’s population that has also suffered as result of the hurricanes: wildlife.
Hurricane Irma sucked water from Florida’s Sarasota Bay, leaving two manatees beached upon the shore.
After pouring water over their bodies to keep the stranded animals comfortable, several people took photos of them and tried to contact emergency services for assistance, to no avail, People.com reports.
Eventually, these good Samaritans banded together and rolled the manatees onto tarps and then dragged them into the water. One man, Marcelo Clavijo, who helped rescue the gentle creatures posted about the experience on Facebook, noting that the rescuers dragged the manatees about 100 yards back to the water. His post has been shared more than 80,000 times.
People were heartened that a group of strangers came together to save the vulnerable manatees.
“Omg! I’ve been seeing this about the water leaving. That’s so awesome that y’all were able to help!!! Stay safe!!” read one comment.
“Thank God y’all were there… xo,” said another.
“Everybody was instantly engaged. People were making sure that the posts were public and tagging people who might be able to help,” Michael Sechler, who was part of the rescue effort, told People. “These were people hunkering down, waiting for the worst, yet they still wanted to help out.”
We’re so glad that these people came together to get the manatees back to their home safely!