The mother of a boy mauled by a shark while diving for lobsters says it is a “miracle” he survived – and that he wants to get back in the water.
Keane Webre-Hayes was in about 9ft (2.7m) of water at Beacon Beach near San Diego, California, when he was attacked on Saturday.
The 13-year-old was pulled onto a kayak by three people, with one describing a “big wake of blood” and saying his “entire back was open”.
The shark tore into the boy’s back, shoulder, torso, face and ear but missed vital organs.
Rescuers applied pressure to his wounds and he was airlifted to hospital.
“We got very, very lucky, and we know it, and we are very thankful,” said his tearful mother, Ellie Hayes.
She said she was standing on a cliff in the suburb of Encinitas when she heard the commotion from the water.
“I think it is a miracle and I think Keane is a miracle,” she told reporters. “And I think he is very, very very strong – and he’s a survivor now.”
Witnesses estimated the shark was about 11ft (3m), but the species is unclear.
One told US media: “He was yelling ‘I got bit, help, help!’ Lucky we got him out of the water because once we threw him up onto the kayak and started heading in that’s when I looked back and the shark was behind the kayak.”
Despite the terrifying incident, Keane’s mother said he is looking forward to getting back in the water and is determined to catch her a “lobster dinner”.
“He’s a warrior,” she said. “I didn’t know he was that good of a swimmer.”
Dr Tim Fairbanks, from Rady Children’s Hospital, said the boy was doing well but was still in a serious condition.
“Keane wants you to know he has all his limbs, and he’s going to be going home fully intact,” Dr Fairbanks said.
“We’re thrilled to be where we are right now. But we still need to get him across the finish line and get him all the way better.”