67-year-old twin sisters Barbara Thomas from McKinney, Texas, and Beverly Skripsky from Scottsdale, Arizona, were out for a morning stroll during their family vacation in Mexico. As they were walking on the beach near the house they were renting in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, a rogue wave swept onto the beach and dragged them into the Pacific Ocean.
Both women lost the struggle against the ocean and drowned. According to the family, the twins often traveled together. At the time, they were on the third day of their week-long vacation. Skripsky’s son, Matt Skripsky spoke to People and said, “we are all still in shock from this unbelievable tragedy […] Dangerous waves ended the lives of two wonderful women.”
This is not the first time that waves have pulled unsuspecting beach-goers into the water. Other tourists visiting both Cabo San Lucas, as well as San Jose del Cabo have also experienced being taken into the ocean and drowned. This has prompted the U.S. Embassy and Consulate in Mexico to warn tourists about the strong currents, riptides, and large waves.
According to the Embassy, “Swimmers, waders and even people simply walking along the beaches have been washed into the ocean by rogue waves […] Some have drowned and others have disappeared.” They also added the potential for waters to be dangerous is not always obvious: “Not all hazardous beaches in this area are clearly marked […] Strong currents could lead to dangerous conditions for even the most experienced swimmers.”
According to Barbara Thomas’ husband, Steve Thomas, the massive wave overwhelmed the two women almost instantly. He stated, “I can’t imagine how fast it was moving but it went from 10 feet to 15 feet in seconds. He spoke about the search and locating the two women, recalling, “They found two women out at sea and I’m thinking, ‘Great, they found them’ and I say, ‘Are they okay?’ and he says, ‘I’m sorry to tell you sir, but they’re deceased.’”
The twins, who were both retired, were very active and lived full and loving lives. They were both wonderful wives, mothers, and grandmothers. They enjoyed spending time with their grandchildren and traveling the world together.
Matt Skripsky described his mother: “People were drawn to her upbeat and fun personality […] She made friends everywhere she went.” In speaking about his aunt, he says that she worked as a director at an assisted living facility and in her spare time volunteered at Head Start and Meals on Wheels. Of his aunt, Matt says, “She found great joy in helping others.”
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