USLA says the trick to getting out is not to fight the current.
That's when JessicaSimmons and her husband - who at the time were enjoying a beach-side dinner - saw the commotion and "knew someone was drowning".
Apart from the Roberta's family, a Chinese couple was also caught in the tide when they went inside to save the children.
Roberta Ursrey, 34, had just left the water when she noticed her two sons, eight-year-old Stephen and his 11-year-old brother, Noah, were too far from shore. But when she and other family members swam out to save them, they also became trapped by the rip current. First, they helped the two young boys reach the human chain. They wanted to help that bad.
"There were yellow caution flags flying on the beach but unfortunately, despite our best efforts at education, people don't always know what the flags mean", Valerie Sale, the public information officer for Bay County, told the Guardian.
With all the sharing we finally got a picture.
When she looked out into the water, she saw people pointing in the direction of an abandoned boogie board, but she originally thought beachgoers were pointing at a shark. "I knew I could get out there and get them".
It's summer and people love to spend their weekends relaxing by the shore. This incredible feat was accomplished by this chain made of strangers, all banding together for one urgent cause. It seemed like a miracle that people like her were on the beach that day.
All of the swimmers were returned to shore safely.
Check out pictures and footage of the event below. Local news said that the human chain was closer to 80 people. According to the WKRG, only two people were injured in the incident and were hospitalized, including Ursrey's mother who suffered a heart attack, and one boy with a broken hand.
While in the water struggling to stay afloat, Ursrey said that's when something fantastic happened: a selfless act performed by strangers that she said helped save her life. Tabitha told The Washington Post they tried to swim both straight and sideways, but nothing worked.
You can recognize a rip current by watching for patches of water that are a different color and are choppier than the surrounding areas. Instead, try to swim parallel to shore.
The boys were screaming for help. This got the attention of people on shore and help did come in a rather incredible way, according to the news reports.