18-year-old Outer Banks shark attack victim releases statement

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(Image: David Marko)

NORFOLK, Va. — The 18-year-old bitten by a shark on June 27 in Dare County has released a statement about his attack.

According to WTKR, John Cole is a recent graduate of Currituck County High School. He was on a camping trip with his family in Dare County when he was bitten by the shark.

Cole suffered injuries to his right calf, right knee and both hands.

Cole was airlifted to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital that day and remains there in fair condition.

Through Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, Cole released the following statement Tuesday:

“I want to thank the people on the beach and Dare County emergency responders who helped me; as well as the medical transport teams who got me stabilized and safely to the hospital. I want to thank the physicians and staff at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital. I appreciate the media for their interest in my story and respect of my privacy as I continue to heal. I’m grateful for the love and support of family and friends as I work toward full recovery.”

The shark bite occurred during a month of shark attacks along the coasts of North and South Carolina.

On Wednesday, a 68-year-old man was pulled under the water by a shark in the Outer Banks on Ocracoke Island.

At the end of June, two people were bitten by sharks near Cape Hatteras.

On June 26, a 47-year-old man was bitten by a shark in the leg and back while trying to get children and another adult out of the water near Avon.

On June 24, an 8-year-old boy in Surf City suffered what appeared to be a shark bite. Police said the wounds were superficial and the injuries were minor.

On June 14, 12-year-old Kiersten Yow from Archdale and a 16-year-old boy from Colorado both lost their arms in shark attacks at Oak Island.

Yow lost her left arm below the elbow and suffered injuries to her left leg. Hunter Treschl lost an arm.

13-year-old girl was bitten while boogie boarding off Ocean Isle Beach on June 11. In that incident, the victim suffered non-life threatening injuries, but the shark took bites of her boogie board.