'I saw my foot in his mouth': Student's harrowing account of shark attack before rescue by friend

19 July 2023, 19:28 | Updated: 20 July 2023, 07:49

Student Chris Pospisil was bitten by a shark
Student Chris Pospisil was bitten by a shark. Picture: GofundMe/Social Media

By Kit Heren

A university student has recalled the shocking moment he was mauled by a shark that latched onto his foot, before his friend hauled him to safety.

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Chris Pospisil was surfing at a beach in Florida last Friday with his friend Reece Redish. They were about to swim back to the shore when the shark attacked Mr Popisil, 21.

He said: "The shark came from under me on my board and tipped me backwards off my board, and I was falling backwards. I saw my foot in his mouth, and it dragged me under."

Mr Redish said he heard his friend splashing around and being dragged underwater.

He said: "He pops up screaming, ‘I got bit!’"

Read more: 'I was mauled by a nine-foot shark while swimming in the sea - my brother fought it off but my life was changed forever'

Read more: Shark kills and eats man in full view of beach at tourist resort, as victim cries out 'dad' to his helpless father watching on

Mr Pospisil said that when he got back to the surface Mr Redish was "already on top of me" and "got me by my shirt, and pulled me on the board."

"I’m not going to leave my friend in the water," he said. "I’m willing to put myself at risk to help out anyone."

Mr Pospisil underwent emergency surgery on his foot, in which the shark had severed several tendons.

Surgeons found pieces of the shark's tooth embedded in the bones in his foot.

Mr Pospisil has been discharged from hospital, but faces a long road to recovery ahead. A fundraiser has been set up to help him with the costs of his recovery.

Chris Pospisil in hospital
Chris Pospisil in hospital. Picture: GoFundMe

​"The top of my foot is going to be numb in some areas for the rest of my life, and my foot might be stiff because they had to repair all seven tendons," he said.​

"Reece really made the difference. You know, if he wasn’t there, I think it could have been way worse, and I think I definitely wouldn’t have gotten to the shore in time and probably would have passed out in the water," he added.

Despite the shocking attack and the long recovery process, both Mr Pospisil and Mr Redish said they were going to head back into the water as soon as possible.

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