Twenty-four year old surfer, Todd Endris, just got out of the hospital after suffering attack by a Great White Shark.
When I was in his mouth, all I could think of was swimming away. I hit the shark with the blunt side of my fist near his right eye a couple times.
Comments Endris, "God was definitely looking out for me. I feel like I do good things, I have good karma, I'm a good person." Still shaken by the attack, Endris continues, "It's a miracle, really. [The shark] missed my lungs by one millimeter. It missed my spine and my muscles weren't so badly torn that they couldn't repair them."
Endris is mobile now, capable of both sitting and standing, and he says there have been a lot of prayers in his household since the attack.
"I'm thankful for friends who were there at the time. Joe, who yelled for me to grab my board. Wes and his brother Samson who helped me to the sand…I was basically drained, but they put a tourniquet on me and basically saved me. I lost close to three liters of blood."
Luckily, his friends acted when they did and were able to make the difference.
Endris describes the attack, "When I was in his mouth, all I could think of was swimming away; I hit the shark with the blunt side of my fist near his right eye a couple times."
Endris' injuries were incurred Tuesday morning, August 28th at about 10:30 am, while surfing with friends at Marina Beach in Monterrey. Sharks have been known to frequent the area, but there have been only 10 attacks there since 1952, two leading to fatalities.
Fellow surfers, however, report that something felt awry a few days prior to the attack. No one could have really known what danger lurked beneath, but there was a definite eeriness in the air. Wayne Kelly, a friend of Endris who surfed the day before, claimed that this sensation was escalated by the increased presence of a school of dolphins frolicking in the lineup.
Common belief is that when dolphins are nearby, surfers need not worry about the unwanted company of sharks. Endris' incident proved to the contrary. As he paddled deep to drop in on the second wave on the incoming set, he was blindsided by mortality in the form of a fifteen-foot, Grimm Reaper from the murky deep. The white shark lunged at Endris from the right, engulfing his torso, and part of his upper right leg. The dolphins may have brought a false sense of security, but redeemed their reputation as they reportedly rushed in to batter the assailing shark and even went so far as to surround Endris as a safety blockade. Onlookers believe that the dolphins may have helped to save Endris from the clutches of death, a serendipitous explanation for the prolonged presence of the marine mammals.
Riding a wave of shock, Endris was able to reach the safety of the shore on his friend's board. Three men helped the 6'3, 200 pound victim to ride in on his stomach as the foamy, blood-tainted whitewater pushed him to dry land. A 911 call was made from the Marina Coast Water District office and help arrived soon to airlift Endris to San Jose Hospital where he is still recovering.
Sharks generally do not strike twice, but eyewitnesses were fairly certain that Todd would have been doomed had it not been for the dolphins who flew into a frenzy around the injured young man; that and the bravery of his fellow surfers who answered Todd's yells for help and acted quickly on shore, utilizing leashes as tourniquets and preventing their friend from looking at the mutilated flesh on his back and leg.
His wounds are no longer life threatening at this point and it is predicted that he will recover full use of his leg as the majority of the damage was inflicted upon his torso. Beaches from Marina all the way to Moss are still closed for an undetermined amount of time. Locals are skeptical about returning to the water, but hopefully time will quell their fear and they can return to surf soon.