Mitch Milan found himself face-to-face with a 10-foot tiger shark on Monday evening, or as he called it, “any surfer’s worst nightmare.” The Hawaiian surfer was attacked during the encounter, but he’s expected to make a full recovery.
He says he was surfing off Davidson’s Beach when he got bit on his left hand and took a chunk out of his surfboard.
“I was outside of the waves, just waiting for a set wave to come in, and all of a sudden, my worst nightmare. Any surfer’s worst nightmare,” he said on Hawaii News.
He’ll need plenty of recovery time, but doctors have told him the shark’s teeth didn’t hit any tendons or major veins.
That’s very good news because Milan is a ukulele player — and he can’t wait to get back to playing.
Milan was in the water for about an hour when he came “face to face” with the 10-foot-long tiger shark.
“I don’t know how I got my hand out of its mouth but all of a sudden, I’m on my back and then the thing kind of swings around and it’s looking at me, and I’m just going, ‘Please God, let me live,’” he said.
Milan says he started screaming and his friend Gary helped him paddled in.
He said he surfs at the beach daily, sometimes twice a day, and hardly sees sharks.
“I consider myself very, very blessed to be alive,” he said. “That’s the one thing when you’re looking at this creature that wants to eat you.”
During the month of October, shark experts from the University of Hawaii are warning of higher shark activity. Their data shows that about 20 percent of Hawaii’s shark attacks over the last 35 years have happened in October.