A 54-year-old Vancouver woman drowned in Lincoln City on Friday.
Oregon State Police said the unidentified woman and her 23-year-old daughter were swimming off the beach at D River Wayside State Recreation Area at 10 a.m.
About 15 minutes into their swim, both women were pulled out by a rip current and began yelling for help toward people on the beach.
The younger woman was able to swim away and get back to shore. Her mother disappeared for several minutes before she was spotted face down in the water, according to investigators.
Mike Grisham, who was staying at a nearby motel with his family, told FOX 12 he heard screams as a man came running down some stairs and dove into the water.
"He reached somebody, and then he started giving a wave," Grisham said. "Like get some help out here. And we thought, boy oh boy, this is something real."
Emergency responders, who were in the area on their way to another call, arrived at the scene and got the woman out of the water. She was taken to the Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital where she was later pronounced dead.
"I saw the look on the daughter's face as she walked up to the ambulance," Grisham said. "And it just broke out hearts. It was just awful."
The woman was visiting the area with her husband and daughter. They have requested her name not be released until they have sufficient time to contact family members.
The tragedy happened at the start of what's expected to be a busy weekend at Oregon beaches.
Shannon Clancy, who was visiting Lincoln City from Minnesota, has been swimming since she was about 5 years old.
Investigators said it doesn't matter how well you can swim, the water can be very deceiving and potentially dangerous.
"It really grabs you, and it will really bring you in," Clancy said. "I got a taste of some of the salt water today and it kinda knocked me just 'cause I was like 'Whoa, I didn't expect that.'"
The Seaside Fire Department said rescue crews also pulled two teens from the water caught in a rip current just after 1 p.m. Friday. The boy and girl, both 16, from Beaverton survived.
Investigators said they were rescued by lifeguards who have been patrolling beaches in the Seaside area since Memorial Day. The lifeguards will continue their patrol throughout the summer.
Water safety experts say if you get caught in a rip current, don't panic. Swim parallel to the beach until you are out of the current and then go toward the shore.
Copyright 2013 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.
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