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Tropical storm kite surfer speaks

August 25, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
A kite surfer, who was caught on tape on the water during Tropical Storm Fay, spoke to ABC's "Good Morning America" about being swept away by the storm.Kevin Kearney was captured on camera surfing during the tropical storm on August 18. The storm sent him flying into the side of a building. Kearney says he would do it all again.

Kearney, 28, has been kite-surfing for four years. Kite-surfing is an adrenaline-packed sport where surfers, tethered to a giant kite, use the wind to whip them across the water and into the air.

On August 18, Tropical Storm Fay was about to make landfall in Florida. Kearney hit the beach in Fort Lauderdale against the advice of his friends.

During that adventure, the extreme winds slammed Kearney to the ground, then picked him up and catapulted him into the side of a building.

"Here in South Florida the wind doesn't really show up in the summer ... we're pretty slow. So, when we got some good wind last week, everybody was out, including myself. It was a great day but I should have packed it up a little bit earlier," said Kearney.

Kearney suffered a throat injury from the incident, so he had trouble speaking during interviews. Kearney was hospitalized; however, he is now doing much better.

"The toughest thing has been sleeping actually. I hurt my back a little bit but I'm doing great," said Kearney.

Of course, many were likely wondering what Kearney was thinking while he took that risky ride.

"It's a beautiful ride here in South Florida. I remember the whole day, but I do not remember flying across the street. I believe what happened is I hit the sand first. I got knocked out slightly, and then went flying across the street from there. So, that part of the day, luckily, I don't remember a whole lot of," said Kearney.

Kearney says this experience won't stop him from doing it again.

"Next time I'll be out there, but I'll be packing up a little bit earlier than I did," said Kearney.

Kearney says although he will be taking advantage of the strong winds of the next tropical storm, he will be sure to wear a helmet next time.

 

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