An umpire's quick actions saved a 7-year-old youth baseball player from the clutches of a dust devil, and it was all caught on camera. The incident happened Sunday afternoon (May 14) at the Fort Caroline Athletic Association baseball field in Jacksonville, according to WJXT.
Footage shared with the news station shows the whirlwind suddenly engulfing Bauer Zoya, a catcher for the Ponte Vedra Sharks. As dust and sand swirled around the young player, a 17-year-old umpire, Aiden Wiles, pulled the young boy from the dust devil.
Even though Bauer was in the vortex for seconds, he told reporters it felt like 10 minutes.
“I couldn’t breathe that much,” Bauer said. “So I held my breath and I feel like I couldn’t touch the ground. So I kind of lifted up a little bit.”
Wiles said he was initially scared of the twister but abandoned his fears to rescue Bauer.
“I was worried about his safety because when I got taught, the players’ safety is always the first thing,” the teen explained.
After Bauer was pulled from the dust devil, his father, Brian Zoya, poured water into the boy's eyes to clean out the dirt. He said he's grateful to Wiles for saving his son, who went back to playing following the scary incident.
“A kid that just had the presence in mind to just do that it’s just special to see,” Zoya told reporters. “He had great parents raising him.”