HORRIBLE details have emerged after a teenage girl suffered devastating wounds in a shark attack off the US coast.
Addison Bethea, 17, was hunting for scallops off the northwest Florida coast when an unidentified shark latched onto her leg on Thursday.
Her firefighter brother helped fight off the predator and provide medical assistance to the severely mutilated victim who faces a difficult road to recovery.
A Perry native, Bethea was traveling to Tallahassee and had been sailing the Scallop for about two hours on the day of the incident.
“We scalloped for about two hours and went to the last point, obviously only for about 15 minutes,” Bethea said.
“We walked towards the boat and I felt like a tugboat.
Addison said she tried to hit the shark but failed because of its position.
“Then it tried to pull me underwater because we were in about seven feet of water,” Addison told CBS Miami.
Her brother, firefighter and paramedic Rhett Willingham, was about eight feet from Addison when he witnessed the fight.
“I got up to turn around and see what was going on because it sounded like something startled her,” Willingham said.
“And she was underwater and then she came up and there was blood all around her and I saw the shark.”
Willingham bravely swam to his sister and saved her from the attacking shark.
The shark’s species has not been confirmed, but witnesses estimate the predator was almost two meters long.
He then took her onto the boat and helped reduce bleeding in her leg by applying a tourniquet.
Bethea suffered serious injuries and had to be flown to a hospital about 70 miles away, Sky News reported.
Doctors said the victim suffered “devastating damage to soft tissue in her right leg.”
While medical officials and Willingham struggled to mitigate the damage, Bethea now faces upcoming surgery to amputate her right leg, CBS News reported.
Despite this devastating situation, the siblings’ mother, Michele Murphy, said their survival was miraculous.
“My daughter should not be alive by medical standards at this time and I know it,” Murphy said.
“It’s a miracle she survived and I know if Rhett hadn’t been the one who was with her when it happened, we could be in a very different scenario now.”
Bethea bravely said she can’t wait to return to the ocean despite the tragic situation and urged people not to be immobilized by her incident.
“Don’t be afraid of the ocean,” Bethea told CBS.
“I’ve had so many comments on my Instagram saying, ‘I’m so scared of the sea now.'”
“But I will still go into the sea when I am healed and better.
“I’ll still do what I love, don’t just let fear take over your life.”
https://www.the-sun.com/news/5702110/teenager-shark-attack-florida-saved-firefighter-brother/ Gruesome details emerge after a teenage girl suffers a ‘devastating’ shark attack as experts warn swimmers to be on the alert