AVENTURA, Fla. - Two people drowned Tuesday after being pulled out by the current off Haulover Beach, authorities said.
According to Miami-Dade Fire Rescue, a group of four people was hanging out at the beach off Collins Avenue and 140th Street when three of them were swept away by the strong current.
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Lt. Tiago Choze said the group was swimming in an unguarded area of the beach at the time.
Rescuers performed CPR on both victims, who were taken to Aventura Hospital.
Bal Harbour police said an off-duty officer who was on his way home from court heard the distress call and attempted to save one of the swimmers.
Miami-Dade police spokesman Alvaro Zabaleta said both victims were pronounced dead at the hospital. They were later identified as Isaac Rosenberg, 67, and Chaim Parnes, 66.
Rosenberg owned Certified Lumber in New York City's Williamsburg neighborhood and was the owner and developer of several properties.
Parnes was a rabbi and diamond dealer, who was pistol-whipped during an armed robbery in North Miami last Thanksgiving.
Police said the robbers got away with $35,000 worth of diamonds.
At the time, Parnes told Local 10 News that he was thankful that what happened to him wasn't worse.
"If (you) take away life, (it) doesn't come back," Parnes said. "So I'm thankful for God. Today's Thanksgiving. I'm giving up big time for God."
Local 10 News reporter Hatzel Vela spoke to some people in the South Florida Jewish community who knew both victims.
"You're talking about two individuals who never lived for themselves, only for somebody else," one man said.
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