MODESTO -- The peaceful Modesto Reservoir is certainly inviting, but for Wendy Ramsey, the serene scene is now a painful reminder.
“I had a feeling before we even went that there was something gonna be wrong there,” Ramsey said.
Ramsey, her boyfriend Wesley Nichols, and their teenage sons visited the lake on Sunday afternoon.
Helen Findley is Nichols' mother, she said her son was a good swimmer, but she couldn’t help but worry.
“...and I reminded him, I said, ‘Be awful careful ‘cause people drown there all the time,'” Findley said.
Ramsey said her boyfriend had lunch then decided to follow his son into the water.
“‘I’m going to go swimming, babe, and then I’ll be back out here in a few minutes.’ I’m like, 'OK have fun with the boys.'”
Three minutes passed and that gut feeling Ramsey had earlier turned into a real sense of danger. Ramsey said two men helped find the 41-year-old underneath the water, they pulled him to shore and Ramsey and another woman performed CPR for 30 minutes.
“And I wouldn’t stop, I kept pushing the cops out of the way. They tell me to move I go, ‘No. I want to save his life.'”
Unfortunately, Nichols couldn’t be saved. Ramsey’s hopes and dreams for their future -- dashed.
“I miss him so much, we were talking about getting married,” Ramsey said.
Now, she wants to warn others to safeguard their families, protect their loved ones.
“If you must go, put a life jacket on,” she said.
The family has also set up a GoFundMe account to help with funeral expenses.
The Stanislaus County Coroner’s Office said they are conducting an autopsy to determine if Nichols had any underlying medical issues.