Exclusive: Family of hero drowning victim speaks out

June 22, 2012 7:56:44 PM PDT
A family tragedy after a brother drowned trying to save his sister's life from the waters off the Jersey Shore.

Now his family is speaking out.

"After a few minutes, I was almost drowning, and that's when he came and started holding on to each other, that's when it got hard to kind of stay up, so we were taking turns trying to hold each other up trying to get oxygen," said Malasia Taylor.

A nightmare that was supposed to be a fun day in the sun at Asbury Park.

After getting sucked into a powerful current Wednesday afternoon, 11-year-old Malasia Taylor and her 16-year-old brother Haron screamed for help.

Their other brother Chaz quickly swam over from helping two young girls escape a rip current.

He did the best he could to keep her float.

She says he even swam beneath her.

"That's when he couldn't hold on any longer, and he let me go and that's when he drowned," adds Malasia.

Chaz Miles' body was found Thursday morning by divers about 200 yards offshore.

"You don't even know, having to bury your child." Michelle benicourt-thomas is now struggling to pay for her son's funeral - something no parent should ever have to plan," said his mother Michelle Benicourt-Thomas.

It was just two weeks ago that Chaz gave his mother away during her wedding.

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