GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, HOST: It is the ultimate nightmare at sea, like the scene out of the terrifying movie “Jaws.” Saturday morning in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Mexico, 49-year-old American surfer Bruce Grimes heads out to the water.
As Bruce is surfing, he feels the unthinkable–a shark at his feet. The nine-foot-long bull shark goes from Bruce, attacks him, bites down on Bruce’s arm. And, miraculously, Bruce got away from the shark.
How exactly did he escape and get himself to a hospital? On the fun from Mexico is the shark attack survivor, Bruce Grimes. Welcome Bruce. I don’t know if congratulations is in order, but tell me, what happened? Describe this for me.
BRUCE GRIMES, ATTACKED BY BULL SHARK: It was just a normal day to go to the beach, and I went out surfing and having fun for about a half-hour. I just finished a really nice wave, and I sat up on my board. I felt a really large bump on the read, and he lifted me out of the water, and I said, that feels like a shark.
So I laid down on my board and started to paddle in, and he took a second pass and tired to knock me off my board. And I started paddling a little faster, and about three strokes later, he grabbed my arm and my hand and gave me a little love tap.
VAN SUSTEREN: What happened? We are looking at a picture of your hand of bandaged up. How badly were you hurt?
GRIMES: I got about 100 stitches. I have three lacerations down my thumb, three lacerations down the pinkie side of my hand, and one big hole from one of his teeth, and a couple of other little holes from his other teeth.
VAN SUSTEREN: How did you get away from him? If he kept circling back to keep hitting at your board and finally got your hand, how did he finally call it off?
GRIMES: I don’t think he liked the taste, or he would have come a fourth time. Because there is a long distance between where I was and where I needed to be, so I was able to paddle a good 500 meters and then catch a wave in. So he gave up.
VAN SUSTEREN: So he did not follow you in any further?
GRIMES: No. I think he had a taste, and he did not like what he tasted. So he moved on.
VAN SUSTEREN: How did you get to the hospital?
GRIMES: I drove myself.
VAN SUSTEREN: Bleeding all over your car?
GRIMES: Oh, yes. I had to run about half a kilometer to the car and rinse off real quick, wrap up in a towel, and then drive really fast.
VAN SUSTEREN: I know you are a big surfer, so let me guess–you have probably been back surfing already?
GRIMES: No, not yet, but I plan on it.
VAN SUSTEREN: When are you going back?
GRIMES: As soon as I am able. They say about 30 days.
VAN SUSTEREN: So you are not going to try to surf with that hand all wrapped up.
GRIMES: No, definitely not.
VAN SUSTEREN: Have you ever had a shark encounter before?
GRIMES: Surfing in Florida for a lot of years, you see sharks not exactly daily, but quite often. But you normally do not see bull sharks. So I have to say yes, I have had other encounters, but not an encounter like this.
VAN SUSTEREN: Were you aware of the fact that there had been some shark attacks in that area? Someone was even killed within a couple of days of your attack.
GRIMES: There was a guy who died the day before. And I did not know about him, about that. I knew about the person a month before, but the day before, I did not know.
VAN SUSTEREN: Would that have deterred you from going in and surfing?
GRIMES: Probably not, but I probably would have been more aware. I would have been watching for signs and more cautious.
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, it is extraordinary. We are looking at your hand in the video. What an extraordinary story, and, well, Bruce, thank you. And I guess it was good fortune that you’re able to save yourself–maybe not so much good fortune that you met up with the bull shark. But, anyway, thank you.
GRIMES: OK, thank you.