Sharks are No Longer Funny

Back during our family vacation, I jokingly posted an entry titled “Sun, Sand and Sharks”.

I just got word from my sister, who is currently vacationing in SanDestin, FL, that a 14-year-old girl just had her leg taken off by a shark and died at the scene. I’m trying to find news online about it – this should no doubt be a national story. Shark sightings are relatively rare in the panhandle, and shark attacks even rarer, so this is rather unnerving. More info as it develops. If any of you Florida types hear anything, please share it.

UPDATE:

Come to think of it, sharks were never really funny. Unless they eat someone like Al Sharpton. Then they’re a little bit funny. But, as a general rule, not funny.

UPDATE 2:

Fox News Television has now reported the attack, but nothing is online as of yet. My sister added that the girl was on vacation with another family at the time. Horrible. She also reports that the shark was estimated to be 11-feet long.

UPDATE 3:

I’ve found the first AP story here.

SANDESTIN, Fla. – A young person was killed Saturday in a shark attack near a campground on the Gulf of Mexico, authorities said.

“We have had a confirmed shark attack. The scene is still under investigation,” said Darlene Drury, spokeswoman for South Walton Fire-Rescue. Area beaches were closed to swimmers immediately afterward.

Details of the attack near Camping on the Gulf Holiday Travel Park in Walton County and the victim’s name were not immediately released. Coast Guard spokesman Shawn McGivern in Mobile, Ala., said authorities were trying to track down the victim’s relatives.

More on shark attacks.

UPDATE 4:

Several more stories are available at this point:

AP
Pensacola News Journal
CNN – also claims shark was 11 ft long
New Orleans news

SUNDAY UPDATE:

Plenty more info out now on Saturday’s shark attack.

CBS News
Memphis Commerical Appeal – (video story)
Updated AP story

The victim, Jaime Daigle of Gonzales, LA:

5 comments

  1. That’s terrible and sad news.

    I’m going to the gulf in late August but I ain’t gettin’ in no stinkin’ ocean! I’ll be perfectly happy inside the air-conditioned condo.

  2. An 11-foot Shark in Florida? That pretty much cancels out the Bull Shark as the culprit and points more of an angle at the Mako, though they aren’t known to be around shallow waters.

  3. Heh. I’m no expert, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn last night.

    There are just very few species of shark in and around Florida which would attack as large of a target as this girl in the method described and be 11-feet long. I would imagine the description is inaccurate and it was much shorter because taking the leg off of someone takes quite a bit of strength as well as sharp teeth. It shoulds like a bull shark (based upon the area) because of their wide mouths and extremely strong teeth and their prey.

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