Published On:Monday, September 06, 2010
By EILEEN CARRON
JUST AS the deep sea fisherman was about to cut the hook from the
shark’s wide open mouth and let him go, out jumped a human foot.
“Everything was intact from the knee down,” said Bahamian investment
banker Humphrey Simmons, “it was mangled, but there was still flesh on
That ended a day of fishing for Mr Simmons and his two companions who
spent most of the morning trying to get away from sharks.
By the time the unusually heavy Tiger shark was landed at the Defence
Force’s Coral Harbour base and his distended body cut open, the body
of a man, minus his head, was found. The leg that the shark had
regurgitated was the man’s left leg. Inside was his severed right leg,
two severed arms and a torso in two sections.
Obviously, as Mr Simmons’ 10-year-old daughter observed, this shark
had its prey all to himself. There was no sign that another shark had
fought over the body. It is believed that the man had drowned before
the shark swallowed him.
Mr Simmons, of Cable Beach, a banker with Xanthos Investment, and his
two deep sea fishing companions — Keith Ferguson and Stanley Bernard —
left Marshall Road, South Beach before 6am Saturday in Mr Simmons
30-foot Pursuit, “Azulardo.”
“We went 35 miles south of Nassau and started fishing about 7.45am,”
said Mr Simmons. “After about 45 minutes we pulled up a fish, and a
shark took it.
“We left the area and went two miles further south and let out the
lines again. Keith pulled up his line and before reaching the surface
the shark had broken the line.”
The weather was calm with winds about 4mph blowing from the southwest.
“I always watch that before I go out,” Mr Simmons laughed.
Trying to get rid of the sharks, Mr Simmons moved again, this time
about two to three miles further south. By then they were about 38
miles from Nassau.
“While pulling up my line,” he said, “I noticed that it was extra
heavy. I called “Boy” (Stanley Bernard) and asked him to go get the
By then the men were fishing in water about 1,000 feet deep. They
had decided against landing the shark because there was too much
tension on the line.
“I then thought about what might have been going through that shark’s
mind,” said Mr Simmons. “Usually when you catch a shark on the line,
and are pulling him up, when he sees sunlight, he heads back down, and
either cuts the line or breaks it.
“While pulling him up there was also a grouper on the line, and he
was trying to get the grouper, but I had both on my line. He came up
with his mouth wide open, but he couldn’t get the grouper because it
was also on my line.”
As the shark neared the surface, Mr Bernard shot him several times in the head.
“We tied the rope around his tail fin, and pulled him towards the
boat. We were going to cut the hook out of his mouth and let him go
when he regurgitated a human foot — intact from the knee down. It was
now about 10am.”
The men then tried to get BASRA and the Defence Force, but could
raise neither — “it was probably because they were out of range for
our VHF radio,” Mr Simmons commented.
They decided to take the left leg and the shark to Nassau.
“There was so much stink coming from the shark’s belly and the belly
was so huge that we thought that there might be more bodies inside,”
said Mr Simmons.
At about 10.30am the men headed for Nassau, dragging the heavy shark
behind. About a half hour later they saw a Defence Force boat and
flagged it down.
The Defence Force’s Enduring Friendship vessel EF-28 pulled up
alongside them, heard their story and took the shark on board. It was
then about 11.30am when they followed the Defence Force boat to
Nassau, arriving at about 12.30pm at the Coral Harbour base.
The shark’s body was offloaded, cut open and inside was the remains
of a headless man.
Mr Simmons said he was a “black man, of heavy build and heavy
structure. He had neither clothes nor any identifying marks.”
Police are now awaiting DNA results to tell them if the remains belong
to one of three men who are still missing at sea.
The Royal Bahamas Defence Force said still reported missing are
62-year-old Frank Brown, Sr, and 47-year-old Delton Newton, who
disappeared after their boat experienced engine trouble in waters off
Clifton Pier last week. A man who disappeared from a boat in Acklins
last week has also not yet been found.
However, Mr Simmons said that Mr Frank Brown Jr stopped at his home,
looked at the photographs of the body parts and confirmed that they
were not those of his father.http://www.tribune242.com/news/09062010 ... 6T08-58-59