A 19-year-old North Carolina man is recovering in the hospital after being bitten by a shark at the Ocean Isle Beach on June 10.
Austin Reed was bitten on his right foot at around 2 p.m. local time, and he was rushed to a nearby hospital for surgery, ABC11 reported.
Reed was spotted smiling in his hospital bed as officials said that he would make a full recovery.
“They closed up about 25 centimeters of cuts on his foot and he anticipates he’ll have a full recovery,” Austin’s father, Wayne Reed, told the ABC affiliate.
Reed was surfing with his brothers and friends when he was attacked.
Family members say 19-year-old Austin Reed was bitten by a shark while surfing off Ocean Isle Beach Monday afternoon. https://t.co/9q6pMKapB1
— WITN Headlines (@WITN) June 11, 2019
“I think the shark grabbed him and when he pulled his foot and when he pulled it out, it looked like a knife had cut it across the left and right side of his foot,” Wayne Reed said.
His brother, Ethan, thought he was joking around.
— Steve Daniels (@DanielsABC11) June 11, 2019
“He said ‘Yo, I got bit by a shark!’ And Austin is one to goof around a lot—so Tyler thought he was just kidding. And he looked at his foot and realized he wasn’t, so they got on Tyler’s board and he brought him in,” he told ABC11.
Speaking to WITN in a video interview, Ethan said that he was “struggling on his board,” adding that “you could see his bone, and it was bleeding a lot.”
WITN reported that their mother is a nurse, and she helped deal with the wound as paramedics arrived.
“He’s a tough guy,” Ethan said, adding that he stayed calm throughout the ordeal.
Austin Reed, meanwhile, explained what had happened. He made a joke about being bitten by a shark that same day.
“The waves were really big so I thought it was going to be a really fun day and I go out there and I’m like wow the waves are really big and I told him for some reason that if any day were I to get bitten by a shark it would be today,” Reed told WITN. “I don’t know why I said that. The water just looked kind of not really like sharky, but it just looked weird for some reason then he just said, ha ha.”
After he was bitten, he said, “I asked for [my friend] to look at my foot cause I was kind of scared to look at it—like I was scared that maybe the shark took a toe off or something,” reported ABC News.
He added: “It’s pretty bad. And I looked at it and there was blood everywhere.”
Earlier this month, a 17-year-old girl’s leg was amputated after a shark attack in North Carolina.
WSOC reported that the girl’s father punched the shark several times before it released her.