It was one fine day, Todd Endris was surfing the California waves with his buddies – he never thought would be a life or death situation. When he was, out of nowhere, attacked by a huge Great White Shark while sitting on his surfboard, he thought he’d die. But it was a miracle that saved Todd that day. A miracle in the form of friendly dolphins.
When he was in the water, not too far from shore, resting from his usual routine on his surfboard, the shark made its move.
“It came out of nowhere. There’s no warning at all,” he told Today News.
Todd, 24, was surfing with his friends in the Marina. He took a break to sit on his surfboard, when suddenly he was hit. The great white shark was about 12 to 15 feet long. There was no question that the shark wanted to consume Todd. The first time the shark snapped its massive jaws, it could not fit him and his surfboard into its mouth and so it tried again. The second time, the shark made what Todd referred to as “a sandwich” out of him and his board. The animal’s enormous teeth sank into the young surfer’s back. Thankfully, his vital organs were unaffected.
“He lifted me out of the water and bit down twice on me – once while I was in the air and once while I was going back into the water. He bit the same area, like an inch away and gave me another row of teeth marks,” he said.
But just when you thought it could not get any worse, the great white resurfaced for round three. Already bleeding and severely wounded, Todd’s back was “like a banana peel,” the great white wanted to finish him off.
Surfer Magazine reported that it chomped down on Todd’s right leg and tried to bite it off entirely. Frantic, Todd began to kick the shark in the nose, determined not to lose his leg or be dragged underneath the water to die.
“It was fast. It was swift and powerful. I instantly started hitting the thing with the butt end of my left fist because I couldn’t hit it with anything else,” said Todd. Todd was left thrashing around in the water and kicked the shark with his left foot, which was uninjured.
“It was gnarly,” he said. When Todd thought it was the end of him, something extraordinary happened.
The young man was still in danger, too hurt to paddle but the dolphins gave him a chance at survival.
“The dolphins all swarmed around behind me as if they were protecting me,” Todd said. The dolphins kept the sharks away and allotted him enough time to get back on his board. Interestingly enough, the dolphins had been there the whole time that the group of friends were surfing. And what’s even more fascinating is that this all happened in just a few feet of water, not too far from the shore.
This dolphin-behavior is not entirely new, as it has been recorded in other cases throughout history. The way in which these intelligent mammals come to the aid of people is still however extremely rare. Had the dolphins not been there, who knows what could have become of Todd?
Once again, mother nature sent rescue to him but this time it was in the form of a wave that brought Todd all the way back to the shore. Half of his blood was left in the ocean when help arrived. An X-ray technician who arrived on scene, Brian Simpson, quickly used the surf leash off Todd’s board and turned it into a tourniquet which helped buy him more time. Simpson also kept Todd calm. He told him to breathe slowly to limit blood flow and shielded his eyes from his mangled body which could have sent Todd straight into shock.
When Todd finally made it to the hospital, a surgeon described his body as a jigsaw puzzle because it was so shredded.
Within six weeks Todd was physically able to surf again. The attack had taken a toll on his mind but eventually he was back on his board.
“You really have to face your fears,” he told Morales. “I’m a surfer at heart, and that’s not something I can give up real easily. It was hard. But it was something you have to do.”
Todd was a true and fearless lover of the sea and the sea and dolphins were obviously absolute lovers of him.