On Sunday, a surfer lost his right foot during a tiger shark attack. Mike Morita, 58, surfed when “I was lying on my board, and then the shark grabbed onto my leg.” The 40-year surfing veteran said his instinct kicked in, and he immediately started fighting off the shark. He kept punching the shark but felt like his punches were weak and useless. Morita said that the tiger shark pulled him under the water twice. When the shark’s tail came by him, he grabbed onto it with his free leg and punched the shark’s gill. This is when the shark let go of him, and he was free.
Once the shark let go, Morita’s friends came to his aid. Morita asked them to tie a tourniquet on him. He said, “Three of my friends that were in the water with me, they tied a tourniquet and brought me to shore.” He could have had a different outcome if it were not for his three friends. “I cannot believe the courage my friends had,” Morita says. “They are my heroes.”
Morita lost his right foot to a tiger shark but is grateful to be alive and said he never felt any fear during the attack. He said he never felt like he would lose his life and could not wait to return to the water. His two kids have created a GoFund account to help pay for his long recovery and have raised $62,000 for his medical care.
This tiger shark attack occurred around 6:50 am at Kewalo Basin, which is near the city’s famed Waikiki Beach. Due to the attack, the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources discouraged beach visitors from swimming and surfing. So far, this is the 4th shark attack in Hawaii this year.
This is another reminder always to have someone with you if you’re going in the water where sharks are prominent.