FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla.- WINK News is hearing from one of the people who helped save a 14-year-old boy struck by lightning on Fort Myers Beach. On the 911 call, you can hear Matthew Rector giving Zachary Lataweic CPR seconds after the bolt nearly killed him. Today, WINK News talked to Rector, updating him on Zac's remarkable recovery.
"I don't think any of us are heroes. We did what we did. It had to happen."
Matthew Rector will disagree if you call him a hero.
"Someone was down, they needed help, we had the knowledge to help." But, he was one of the first people to run out in that storm, seconds after a bolt of lightning knocked Zac to the ground.
"It was extremely chaotic, so there was a lot to take in in one sitting," said Rector. At first, Zac's road to recovery wasn't so promising. Machines and doctors kept him alive for the first five days, but today, Zac is on track to make a full recovery, heartfelt news Matthew was hoping to hear.
"He's a young kid with his whole life ahead of him, I think it's cool that he made it," Rector told WINK News.
Matthew saw first hand the grim shape zac was in right after the lightning hit. Doctors say he's here today because of matthew's quick thinking to start CPR.
"That saved his life, because if that is not done right at the scene, he dies," said Dr. Roberto Monge, Zac's doctor.
In the 911 call, you can hear Matthew working to keep Zac alive.
"1, 2, 3, 4... Is he breathing? 1, 2, 3 4."
"I'm extremely happy he made it through and is doing good. I hope everything gets back to normal for him and live a normal life."
WINK News was there when Zac made his first public appearance. He came out walking and talking. Matthew was all smiles when he heard about it.
"It's awesome, it makes me smile. It's cool that he is back to, speaking and walking and I'm proud of him."
I asked--- how often he thinks about Zac.
"Every time it storms, it was a serious day, a serious deal."
But if it wasn't for Matthew and the group who ran to help Zac, this story could have ended tragically for Zac.
"Thank you everybody, for everything. I mean between the community, the doctors, the nurses, everybody, just everybody thank you. You can't express how thankful you are," said Danita Lovins, Zac's mom.
"What do you want to say to those people?" "Thank you," said Zac.
Matthew would like to meet the teenager who is defying the odds.
He's more than welcome to swing trough anytime and say hi, put him on a jet ski if he wants, welcome back bud!
It's important to mention, Matthew is a humble man, and gives much of the credit to the other people who ran out in that storm to help save Zac's life.