Animal Attack Files

Surfer attacked by shark off Oregon coast

                  Associated Press, 04/22/98 04:58

                  GLENEDEN BEACH, Ore. (AP) - Surfer John Forse was straddling his
                  surfboard 150 yards from shore when he saw the water swirl about 20 to 30
                  feet away.

                  ``There are lot of seals out here, so I didn't think anything of it,'' he said. ``The
                  next thing I knew I felt this pressure on my thigh. No pain, it was more like a
                  vice grip.''

                  Forse, 50, was attacked by a 15-foot white shark Tuesday off Gleneden
                  Beach, 85 miles southwest of Portland. In an attack that left a foot-long gash
                  and eight teeth marks, the shark pulled him down briefly, came back up, then
                  started to dive again.

                  ``We were thrashing around down there and he came back up,'' Forse said,
                  adding that he still was attached to his board with a quick-release cord.

                  ``His dorsal fin was about a foot away, so I started beating on it,'' he said. ``He
                  started down a second time and the cord snapped. He must have bitten it in
                  half. The whole thing took, oh, 20 seconds.''

                  He climbed back on his board, laid down and paddled for shore.

                  Some of the wounds were left open to drain, and more surgery was scheduled
                  for Friday, North Lincoln Hospital spokeswoman Karen Bondley said.

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