Sunday, August 19, 2018
Public safety

Alafia boat crash cut short a life of fishing, family, big plans

TAMPA — Before Brent Davis died on the water, he lived on the water.

An avid fisherman, Davis and his fiance were stalking bass and catfish every time their days off from work matched up, taking their catch home to cook together.

He died in a boat crash early Monday while fishing with two others, and now his fiance, Tamaka Torres, is asking the public for help finding answers.

Davis, 41, left behind two children, and he had plans to get married. The day before he died he was looking at homes with his fiance, she said. The couple was anticipating Christmas parties and Thanksgivings together.

She said he called her "sugar bear" and she called him "Yogi bear." She said they were each other’s rock.

"He means the world to me in a way that words can’t even describe," she said.

BACKGROUND: Authorities identify man who died in Alafia River boat crash

They usually would fish around the Lithia area, sometimes from 7 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

The couple had made a recipe book together and would send new recipes to each other.

Davis was a supervisor at James Hardie, a building products company, where he worked for 20 years, Torres said, and he loved his job, the crew and the company. A plant manager for James Hardie declined to comment, citing employees’ continued distress about the death.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is investigating the crash. Davis had been on the water with Steven Cannon of Plant City and Cannon’s 12-year-old son when the 16-foot-boat collided with the U.S. 41 bridge that stretches over the Alafia River near Gibsonton. The boy and his father were out of the hospital by the end of the day, but divers found Davis’s body eight hours after the crash.

Officials found the boat run nearby, run aground alongside a boat ramp. FWC spokeswoman Melody Kilborn said the agency is still determining who was driving the boat and investigating the circumstances of the crash. She said the boat was moving west toward Hillsborough Bay when it crashed into the bridge.

Kilborn said that anyone who witnessed the accident or has information about it is encouraged to report it to the agency.

Torres said she and the family are looking for information about the circumstances of the crash, specifically whether anyone on the river has video cameras that may have caught footage of the boat leading up to the accident.

"We are asking for help since we don’t have the resources and seem to be getting little information about the investigation," she said Tuesday.

Steve Davis, Brent’s brother, said that Hopewell Funeral Home in Plant City is handling arrangements. An obituary posted there says he loved playing board games and watching SpongeBob and movies with his children, Zachary Davis and Marissa Davis. His fiance said that he loved his kids deeply.

He was survived by his children and their mother, Autumn Davis, his four siblings, his parents and his dog, Dude. The funeral service is planned for June 15, according to the obituary.

Sunday, Torres kissed Davis three times before leaving for work, and when she got to her job around 5 p.m. she called Davis to ask if he was going fishing. He said yes. She told him that she loved him, and he said, "I love you too, sugar bear," Torres recalled.

Now, she keeps calling his phone to hear his voice in the mailbox greeting.

"The world lost an amazing person," she said.

Bre Bradham can be reached at [email protected] and (803) 460-9001.

Comments
Tampa holds a birthday vigil for Lillia Raubenolt, the young girl killed on Bayshore

Tampa holds a birthday vigil for Lillia Raubenolt, the young girl killed on Bayshore

Somewhere Over the Rainbow was the first song Lillia Raubenolt ’s parents sang to her as a newborn, according to her uncle, John Reisinger."They were just so happy when she was born," he said.But on May 23, while the family was visiting Tampa from Oh...
Updated: 9 minutes ago
North Carolina fugitives, charged with shooting at cops, found and arrested in Treasure Island

North Carolina fugitives, charged with shooting at cops, found and arrested in Treasure Island

TREASURE ISLAND — Two men on the run from law enforcement in North Carolina were found hiding in Treasure Island — armed with an AR-15, a machete and a pipe bomb, deputies said — leading to a standoff with a SWAT team that ended early Sunday morning....
Updated: 2 hours ago
Clearwater police: Truck flips on U.S. 19, killing 40-year-old driver

Clearwater police: Truck flips on U.S. 19, killing 40-year-old driver

CLEARWATER — A 40-year-old man died after flipping his truck on U.S. 19 early Sunday morning, police reported.About 3:02 a.m., Michael Bellavia, 40, of Clearwater, was heading northbound on the highway, exiting at NE Coachman Road, according to the ...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Police: Driver, 26, goes wrong way on Courtney Campbell, dies after car flips into water

Police: Driver, 26, goes wrong way on Courtney Campbell, dies after car flips into water

CLEARWATER — A 26-year-old died after heading the wrong way on the Courtney Campbell Causeway and falling into the water early Sunday morning, police reported.About 4:13 a.m., Scott Anthony Wolf, 26, of Lee County, was driving a 2004 Chrysler Crossfi...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Girl, 6, found slain in her Albuquerque-area home has connections to Wimauma

Girl, 6, found slain in her Albuquerque-area home has connections to Wimauma

The family of a 6-year-old girl found dead in New Mexico last weekend is trying to bring her remains to Wimauma.Court documents say the body of Ariana "Jade" Romeo was found at her home in Rio Rancho north of Albuquerque on bloody sheets with marijua...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Woman dead after boyfriend shoots her once, returns and shoots again, deputies say

Woman dead after boyfriend shoots her once, returns and shoots again, deputies say

LARGO — A man faces a charge of murder after firing a shot at his girlfriend as she visited a travel trailer in Largo, fleeing the scene, then returning to the trailer and shooting her again a number of times, deputies said.Nathaniel J. Yates, 32, o...
Published: 08/18/18
Deputies find body in burning vehicle near Disney World miniature golf course

Deputies find body in burning vehicle near Disney World miniature golf course

A body was found in a burning vehicle near a Disney World miniature golf course early Saturday, according to WKMG News 6 Orlando.Authorities were initially called to a vehicle fire about 4 a.m. at Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course, 120...
Published: 08/18/18
Girlfriend of murder suspect arrested, too, in aftermath of Hudson drug shootout

Girlfriend of murder suspect arrested, too, in aftermath of Hudson drug shootout

HUDSON — The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office made a second arrest Saturday in the aftermath of a drug-related shootout Wednesday night that left one man dead and a woman critically injured.Deputies arrested Alexas Marie Gregas, 19, of Hudson, on charge...
Published: 08/18/18
Levy County man, 53, killed trying to pass truck north of Inverness

Levy County man, 53, killed trying to pass truck north of Inverness

INVERNESS — A 53-year-old Levy County man died when he collided with a Mack truck while trying to pass it north of Inverness, the Florida Highway Patrol said.Claude Pepper Blount Jr. was headed south on U.S. 41 near Overdrive Circle about 1:50 p.m. F...
Published: 08/18/18
Police: Motorcyclist hospitalized after crash at Sheffield Lake Park in St. Petersburg

Police: Motorcyclist hospitalized after crash at Sheffield Lake Park in St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG — A motorcycle driver suffered serious injuries early Saturday when he lost control and crashed at Sheffield Lake Park, according to the St. Petersburg Police Department.Robert Douglas Blume, 47, was driving north along 49th Street N o...
Published: 08/18/18