Man survived severe shark attack as wetsuit kept organs from spilling out

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    An Australian bloke was dubbed the "Great White Whisperer" after being dragged to the bottom of the ocean in a horrifying shark attack.

    Rodney Fox miraculously survived one of the most severe non-fatal Great White Shark attacks in history in December 1963, while spearfishing along Australia's southern coast.

    The now 80-year-old was just 23 when he was viciously attacked and suffered horrific injuries, which included a punctured diaphragm, torn lung, pierced scapula, and exposed abdomen, ribcage, spleen, and upper stomach.

    READ MORE: Family searching for lost son only found one 'shark-gnawed' bone of 20-year-old

    His injuries were so bad that his wetsuit was said to be the only thing preventing his organs from spilling out and he later required 462 stitches to sew him back together.

    To this day, he still has part of one of the sea creature's teeth embedded in his wrist after he tried to push the shark away.

    Speaking to Stories of the South, Rodney recalled how close he came to dying.

    He said: "I felt this huge crash and was hurled through the water. I thought a submarine had hit me, then I realised I was in big trouble."

    "My first thought was ‘it’s eyes, I’ve got to gouge its eyes’ and it seemed to let me go so I tried to push it away and my hand disappeared down its mouth. I grabbed it in a bear hug, but knew I was going to drown so I went to the surface."

    The water around him had turned red as he was surrounded by a pool of his own blood, enticing the shark to go at him again.

    Luckily this time the shark got hold of his fish float instead. But this hurled him to the bottom of the water, leaving him at risk of drowning, before the line broke from its jaws and he was allowed to fight to the surface.

    After his miraculous but long recovery, Rodney refused to be afraid of the beast that almost killed him.

    He has since created the world’s only ocean floor shark cage experience, Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions, and established the Fox Shark Research Foundation in 2001, with the aim of educating people about the animals and the important role they play in the ecosystem.

    Rodney claims that seeing great white sharks up close is a "breathtaking experience".

    He said: "When you see one coming towards you it takes your breath away.

    "You’re looking into the eye of one of the creatures of the world that very few people have seen. No one can ever take away that feeling of seeing your first shark."

    He added: "The more people understand sharks, the more they realise they are a beautiful, endangered creature deserving of our respect and protection."

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    • Shark Attacks
    • Sharks
    • Great White Shark
    • Australia

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