A nearby beachgoer joined the lifeguard in a rescue effort and used a paddleboard to guide Cottrell back to shore, CNN reported.
The lifeguard tried to revive Cottrell, who went into cardiac arrest before dying at a nearby hospital.
Cheyenne later told authorities that it was her husband’s first time in the ocean.
The widow shared her grief in a Wednesday Facebook post, writing, “3 days of wedded bliss turned into a nightmare very quickly for the Cottrell family as well as my own.”
“Never did I think at 22 would I be a wife and then a widow so quickly.”