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Posted: 11/21/2003 9:53:59 AM EDT

Surfer Girl Won't Give Up Her Passion
By MATT SEDENSKY, AP

KILAUEA, Hawaii (Nov. 21) - Before losing her arm in a shark attack, Bethany Hamilton was a top amateur surfer who was expected to turn pro. Now she is unsure whether she will ever surf competitively again. But she said she will not give up her passion.




AP
Bethany Hamilton says the worst thing about the shark attack was seeing her loved ones cry.


Just this past Halloween, she was lying on her surfboard, taking a break after catching some early morning waves, when the gray blur emerged near her left arm as it dangled in the Pacific.

Bethany was suddenly being jerked back and forth.

"I looked down at the red water," she recalled. "Right away I knew it was a shark and I knew my arm was gone."

The 13-year-old lost more than half her blood and all but four inches of her arm, though those who witnessed the attack say Bethany never screamed or panicked.

"There's no need for that," she told The Associated Press nearly three weeks after the attack, in one of the first in a series of interviews and TV appearances. "I wasn't that scared. I didn't think I was going to die or anything."

Tall and lean, with blond hair and a tan, Bethany has accepted her misfortune with remarkable serenity.

"There's no time machine," she said. "I can't change it. That was God's plan for my life and I'm going to go with it."

For all the nightmarish drama the shark attack conveys, Bethany recounts it with nonchalance: She arose around 5 a.m. on Oct. 31, heading out to do what she loves - surfing with her best friend, Alana Blanchard. After about a half-hour of action, she took a break, dangling her arm in the ocean when the 15-foot tiger shark attacked.

Blanchard's father, Holt, surfing nearby, used a surf leash as a tourniquet. Fellow surfers towed her in on a surfboard. She blacked out briefly, then woke up ashore.




· Explore & Discover Sharks
· Incredible Shark Photos


When she reached Wilcox Memorial Hospital, another amazing part of the story unfolded: The girl's father, Tom Hamilton, had been lying on the operating table, moments away from knee surgery, when a doctor burst through the doors, saying the room was needed for a shark attack victim. When he heard it was a 13-year-old, Tom Hamilton's heart sank. He knew it was either his daughter or her best friend.

Bethany spent nearly a week in the hospital and has remained largely in seclusion since then.

When her bandages were removed - and her stump was revealed - one of her brothers turned white. Her mother nearly collapsed. And her grandmother went outside and wept.

On Thursday, her stitches were to come out and she awaited word on when she could return to the water.

"If I was like a person that just quit surfing after this, I wouldn't be a real surfer," she said. "I'm definitely going to get back in the water."

Bethany hopes to be fitted with prosthetics allowing her to continue not only to surf but also to play the guitar. She plans to try snowboarding for the first time this winter, and she is aiming for a career in photography.

Around Bethany's neck hangs a glittering gold surfboard - a get-well gift from a family friend. It has a diamond in the center and a bite taken out of the top, just like her own board, with its 16-inch gash.

Bethany said the attack is "pretty much all I think about," and she has revisited the horrible event in her dreams four times since the attack.

But she said: "If you don't get over it, then you'll just be sad and cry."


11/21/03 00:13 EST

Copyright 2003 The Associated Press. The information contained in the AP news report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press. All active hyperlinks have been inserted by AOL.

Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:13:20 AM EDT
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:17:12 AM EDT
She'll be easy to spot. She'll be the one paddling in a circle.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:23:58 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TexasEd:
She'll be easy to spot. She'll be the one paddling in a circle.




You ought to be ashamed of yourself Sir!

<­BR>





Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:24:15 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TexasEd:
She'll be easy to spot. She'll be the one paddling in a circle.



HA! You are going to hell, see you there!

Honestly, I hope he gets the other arm.



-HS
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:29:23 AM EDT
Wow, what spirit in this kid. How many of us would be moping around feeling sorry for ourselves. With that kind of attitude she will do well with her life.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:33:05 AM EDT
I demand this thread be locked !!!
It clearly violates the board COC regarding pics posted of womenz !!!!
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:36:27 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SPECTRE:
I demand this thread be locked !!!
It clearly violates the board COC regarding pics posted of womenz !!!!

The CC says 'BOTD'. I have a hard time thinking of someone that far underage as a babe.
GOTD, she is
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:39:21 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
www.bethanyhamilton.com/



Just a wee bit vain.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:41:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TexasEd:
She'll be easy to spot. She'll be the one paddling in a circle.



Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:45:41 AM EDT
Well , what a dumb ass. Let it get her other arm. Sharks need to eat too, and if they are going to eat people,I would prefer they eat the dumb asses.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:48:13 AM EDT

Originally Posted By sherm8404:

Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl:
www.bethanyhamilton.com/



Just a wee bit vain.



Have you ever seen a jock that wasn't?

Same could be said about teenage girls in general.

I thought ETH et. al. would be impressed by all the Christian refrences.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 10:56:31 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TexasEd:
She'll be easy to spot. She'll be the one paddling in a circle.



Geezzz TexasEd...How cruel! I bet you steer for kittens on the road! Have to admit tho...that was one funny statement. I couldn't stop laughing.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 12:38:02 PM EDT
Texas Ed, that was pretty rude&crude.

But. I did laugh my ass off.

One tough kid.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 12:55:28 PM EDT
Another candidate for the Darwin award...
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:09:47 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TexasEd:
She'll be easy to spot. She'll be the one paddling in a circle.



Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:12:28 PM EDT
Like, what kind of surfer would she be, like, if she didn't surf again?

Like, maybe she should have spent, like a little bit, loike, more time, in school instead of like, on her board.

You think?
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:18:14 PM EDT
Wow, I never would of thought so many people here would be so jealous of that girls lifestyle.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:26:42 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TexasEd:
She'll be easy to spot. She'll be the one paddling in a circle.



ROTFLMAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
<­BR>You are a sick sick man...........
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:30:26 PM EDT
Some pretty cold responses here. Let's hope the same or similar never happens to your daughters.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:33:12 PM EDT
Hang five, dude!
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:38:52 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/21/2003 1:39:29 PM EDT by cyanide]

Originally Posted By Alex_F:
Some pretty cold responses here. Let's hope the same or similar never happens to your daughters.


I could guarantee you my 13 year old children would never have run the risk of having a shark bite them. Call me old fashion I never let them play in waters that had sharks in them.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:39:29 PM EDT
She wants to keep surfing?

Gee, what does it TAKE for her to get the idea that maybe you shouldn't be sharing the same ocean with sharks? If I lost one arm to a shark, you can bet your entire ass that I'd never be in the ocean again unless it was inside a CAGE.

"Paddling in a circle"....You, sir, are a BAD man! Well done!

And think of all the money she'll save on guitar lessons, and manicures, too!

I guess she's not going to be driving a stick shift, either.

Her typing speed just got cut in HALF...at least!


Food chain consequences be damned, I'd be in favor of rendering all shark species that are known to be a danger to humans EXTINCT.

CJ


Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:46:22 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cyanide:

Originally Posted By Alex_F:
Some pretty cold responses here. Let's hope the same or similar never happens to your daughters.


I could guarantee you my 13 year old children would never have run the risk of having a shark bite them. Call me old fashion I never let them play in waters that had sharks in them.



Congratulations. That has to do with these comments what again?
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 1:48:06 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cyanide:

Originally Posted By Alex_F:
Some pretty cold responses here. Let's hope the same or similar never happens to your daughters.


I could guarantee you my 13 year old children would never have run the risk of having a shark bite them. Call me old fashion I never let them play in waters that had sharks in them.



Yeah--- real tough talk from someone in Ohio!!!!

Tha gurl has bigger balls then most of you sad little men here.......
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 2:31:42 PM EDT
Goddamn, some of you guys are really assholes.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 2:37:45 PM EDT
Some of you guys are more paranoid about sharks than my MOM is. She thinks they climb up into boats to attack people like in Jaws.

I take it you avoid all salt water then?
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 2:50:18 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cyanide:
Call me old fashion I never let them play in waters that had sharks in them.


You mean, like, the ocean? MY GOD, don't let your children play there, 'they's is monstas in dere!" There is a risk associated with life in general. Will you not let your kid drive, ride a bike, play football,..., go shooting???

I am a bit biased here, as I'm a windsurfer, and have spent many weeks in the water off the North Shore of Maui. Yes, my risk of being snacked on by a shark is significantly higher than yours, but it's a risk worth taking.

I think the joke was funny, and I suspect that girl would laugh as well. Kids like her who grow up doing what they love in an environment that looks like paradise, have completely different outlooks on life. They seem more adult than they are, but are more naive and far less 'worldly' than many younger kids. I kid you not, the islands work on my brain too, and I'm only there a couple weeks at a time. I can't imagine growing up on Kauai. It must be like hippie hard wiring...

None the less, I feel sorry for her, as her career has been dashed. She'll have to grow up outside the circle she's lived in for years, and that will be VERY difficult on Kauai. This event is not any more tragic than a car wreck, or someone's kid getting cancer, etc... It's just that her story was a fairy tail, that was ended by 'monster'. Ergo, it's newsworthy.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 2:58:08 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/21/2003 3:01:01 PM EDT by Cape_hunter]
What a fucking joke! You know, this thread shows the true measure of a few members here. That girl got her fucking arm bitten off by a shark and is not afraid to get back into the water to what she loves to do. And all you guys can do is make jokes at her? WTF?

So should she not go back into the water? Why not? Are you saying that when a person gets hurt they should just give up? What about troops in battle? Once they are fired upon should they just take that as a message that there is bad people here and they should just go home?

What a bunch of assholes.

CH
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 3:11:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/21/2003 3:12:43 PM EDT by cyanide]

Originally Posted By DriftPunch:

Originally Posted By cyanide:
Call me old fashion I never let them play in waters that had sharks in them.


You mean, like, the ocean? MY GOD, don't let your children play there, 'they's is monstas in dere!" There is a risk associated with life in general. Will you not let your kid drive, ride a bike, play football,..., go shooting???

I am a bit biased here, as I'm a windsurfer, and have spent many weeks in the water off the North Shore of Maui. Yes, my risk of being snacked on by a shark is significantly higher than yours, but it's a risk worth taking.

I think the joke was funny, and I suspect that girl would laugh as well. Kids like her who grow up doing what they love in an environment that looks like paradise, have completely different outlooks on life. They seem more adult than they are, but are more naive and far less 'worldly' than many younger kids. I kid you not, the islands work on my brain too, and I'm only there a couple weeks at a time. I can't imagine growing up on Kauai. It must be like hippie hard wiring...

None the less, I feel sorry for her, as her career has been dashed. She'll have to grow up outside the circle she's lived in for years, and that will be VERY difficult on Kauai. This event is not any more tragic than a car wreck, or someone's kid getting cancer, etc... It's just that her story was a fairy tail, that was ended by 'monster'. Ergo, it's newsworthy.

Yes driftpunch, they have been in the Ocean, a few feet off shore under my watchful eye, did I let them go out there a few hundred feet NO, I saw the movie JAWS.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 3:35:00 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DriftPunch:

None the less, I feel sorry for her, as her career has been dashed. She'll have to grow up outside the circle she's lived in for years, and that will be VERY difficult on Kauai. This event is not any more tragic than a car wreck, or someone's kid getting cancer, etc... It's just that her story was a fairy tail, that was ended by 'monster'. Ergo, it's newsworthy.



I don't know about dashing her career. Delayed perhaps. Google around a bit and see what they got coming down the line in the way of prosthetics. Five fingered robotic arms with the same DOFs as the real thing. Electrode implants in the brain that allow you to operate a robot like that by thinking. Sure they are still in the lab in monkey tests right now- but this girl is also only 13. By the time she is 25 who knows what they could fit her with if she can find the dollars.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 11:06:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By cyanide:

Originally Posted By DriftPunch:

Originally Posted By cyanide:
Call me old fashion I never let them play in waters that had sharks in them.


You mean, like, the ocean? MY GOD, don't let your children play there, 'they's is monstas in dere!" There is a risk associated with life in general. Will you not let your kid drive, ride a bike, play football,..., go shooting???

I am a bit biased here, as I'm a windsurfer, and have spent many weeks in the water off the North Shore of Maui. Yes, my risk of being snacked on by a shark is significantly higher than yours, but it's a risk worth taking.

I think the joke was funny, and I suspect that girl would laugh as well. Kids like her who grow up doing what they love in an environment that looks like paradise, have completely different outlooks on life. They seem more adult than they are, but are more naive and far less 'worldly' than many younger kids. I kid you not, the islands work on my brain too, and I'm only there a couple weeks at a time. I can't imagine growing up on Kauai. It must be like hippie hard wiring...

None the less, I feel sorry for her, as her career has been dashed. She'll have to grow up outside the circle she's lived in for years, and that will be VERY difficult on Kauai. This event is not any more tragic than a car wreck, or someone's kid getting cancer, etc... It's just that her story was a fairy tail, that was ended by 'monster'. Ergo, it's newsworthy.

Yes driftpunch, they have been in the Ocean, a few feet off shore under my watchful eye, did I let them go out there a few hundred feet NO, I saw the movie JAWS.



Erm, you sir are truly ignorant of the subject then.

The vast majority of shark attacks occur in water depth of 3 feet, or less, and within 100 feet of shore.

Heck the shark that is credited with the most attacks (the bull shark) even swims in brackish and fresh water. They have even caught bull sharks as far up the Mississippi river tributaries as the Ohio river.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 11:21:23 AM EDT

....The vast majority of shark attacks occur in water depth of 3 feet, or less, and within 100 feet of shore.




Talk about your misinterpretation of data...!


The reason for that is because the vast majority of people in the ocean are in 3 feet of water or less and within 100 feet of shore!

This is like that statistic that says most fatal car accidents occur with 11 miles of home...because most of the time, most people are within 11 miles of home.


I think that a careful analysis of stats regarding swimmers and divers, where they are, how deep the water is, how far out they are, and how many of them are out there, when correlated against shark attack data adjusted for these factors would reveal that deep water attacks are probably as likely as shallow water attacks, if not more so.

When working with statistics, it's important to take into account the conditions the statistics were gathered under. The picture is rarely complete.

CJ

Link Posted: 11/22/2003 2:58:46 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Ramjet:

Originally Posted By TexasEd:
She'll be easy to spot. She'll be the one paddling in a circle.



Geezzz TexasEd...How cruel! I bet you steer for kittens on the road! Have to admit tho...that was one funny statement. I couldn't stop laughing.



That doesn't work!

If you steer for them you will miss them every time.

BigDozer66
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 3:06:40 PM EDT
Saw a bit of it on the news, I couldn't finish watching it, every 3 word was "like", drove me bananas. That's a good pic of her, she's fairly plain looking.
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