02/26/2012 Jason Lasser - Florida

Recent 2012 Shark Attacks and 2012 Shark Attack Related Incidents

02/26/2012 Jason Lasser - Florida

Postby alb » Fri Mar 02, 2012 1:36 am

Lasser said Tuesday he believes his right foot struck a spinner shark in the mouth, opening a gash that severed tendons and ligaments.

Wound from spinner shark ends in heart surgery for Lasser


by Chad Abraham, Aspen Daily News Staff Writer
Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Jason Lasser may have the ultimate fish story.

Kitesurfing Sunday off the coast of Florida, the Aspenite hit the top of a big wave that happened to have another inhabitant.

Lasser said Tuesday he believes his right foot struck a spinner shark in the mouth, opening a gash that severed tendons and ligaments.

“It felt like I hit a concrete pier,” he said. “I hit him, lifted my foot out of the water and thought, ‘Uh-oh.’”

Blood had not yet begun to flow out of the still-white wound when Lasser decided to get to the beach as soon as possible.

“I went in so fast my shorts came flying off,” he said. “I was mostly worried about my winky hanging out and something biting that.”

A surfer nearby helped him land his kiteboard, and his father took him to the emergency room — first, though, he took a group photo with his friends, the bloody foot featured prominently — at JFK Medical Center in West Palm Beach, where the story gets more interesting.

Before foot surgery that would leave him with 26 stitches, Lasser was given an electrocardiogram test.

The exam showed he had Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, a heart condition that can lead to episodes of rapid heart rate. Lasser said he had periodically experienced a rapid heartbeat since childhood but had never been diagnosed with the syndrome.

And so on Tuesday, two days after the shark encounter, Lasser underwent heart surgery to alleviate the syndrome.

Lasser spoke about the incident before heading into the operating room, where he was worked on by a surgeon named, of course, Robert Fishel.


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Photo courtesy Jason Lasser
Jason Lasser of Aspen says hitting a shark in the mouth with his foot Sunday while kiteboarding off the Florida coast felt like “hitting a concrete pier.”

On Sunday, he and a handful of buddies drove to a spot on the Florida coast, left a vehicle there, and then drove up the coast to another site that would allow them 20 miles of kitesurfing.

The one-time Aspen City Council candidate and Historic Preservation Commission board member took up the sport, a combination of wakeboarding, windsurfing, surfing and paragliding, in 2008.

After the group took off from the Singer Island area, Lasser said he looked down at one point to see 20 or so sharks below him. The Palm Beach inlet he was riding has a lot of fish coming in and out, making it prime hunting ground for large predators, he said.

“I don’t worry about them at all,” Lasser said of sharks. “They don’t bug you.”

Crossing the inlet near Lake Worth around 2 p.m., he eagerly touched down on a choice wave. Lasser believes his kiteboard went underneath the shark and that his foot scrapped its teeth as he went by.

“It wasn’t a bite wound per se,” he said, as there weren’t marks from the shark’s upper and lower jaws. “I hit him right in the head and teeth” at around 20 mph.

He said he never felt any pain, but with the earlier sighting of the plethora of sharks, “I didn’t want to be bleeding in the water.”

Lasser feels no animosity toward the animal: “He was just doing his thing, and I was doing mine,” he said. “It was just an unfortunate collision.”

Or maybe not so unfortunate.

Lasser called later Tuesday to say the heart surgery was a complete success. Tears of joy streamed down his face after Dr. Fishel told him he would now have a normal heart rate.

And all because he kicked a shark in the face.

“I’m just so thankful,” Lasser said. “That shark hooked me up.”


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Re: 02/26/2012 Jason Lasser - Florida

Postby alb » Sat Mar 17, 2012 10:07 am

Kiteboarder Examines Evidence, Reflects on Shark Encounter

by beachhunter on March 2, 2012


On Monday I published a post about kiteboarder Jason Lasser and his unexpected encounter with a Spinner shark in Palm Beach Inlet.

This was the result of the encounter:

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Jason Lasser's foot after being bitten by a Spinner shark.
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Jason Lasser's foot after being bitten by a Spinner shark.

After having his foot surgically repaired, and after having a few days to think about what happened and examine the damage to his kiteboard, Jason has come to a new understanding of the nature of his encounter.

Initially, he thought he probably just collided with the shark by accident and that the shark meant him no harm, and that the damage to his foot was a result of a brush with the shark’s mouth rather than an actual intentional bite. However, an examination of his board and a recollection of the number of sharks in the water and their behavior has led him to believe that he was actually bitten “on purpose.”

The evidence:

board-damage-5-jason-lasser.jpg
ere Jason poses with his bandaged foot next to the foot strap that his foot was in. Obviously his bandaged foot won't fit into the strap for this picture.
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Here Jason poses with his bandaged foot next to the foot strap that his foot was in. Obviously his bandaged foot won't fit into the strap for this picture.

Above, Jason has his foot next to the strap that it was in when the bite happened. He was riding “goofy foot,” which means his right foot was forward. So in this photo, his direction of travel was to the right. Does anyone note the irony of the shark images on the kiteboard?

Jason writes:


Just got my board after thinking it might have some evidence and holy *&%$@! The straps saved me from his upper or lower bite! Look at the damage, the straps totally saved me!

Riding right foot forward (goofy foot) on my toe-side edge as I was bottom turning to go up the face of a wave (breaking East to West) – Crossing the Palm Beach Inlet.

The water was dark with sharks (50% water color and the other half dark grey).

My gut told me I got hit from the right, not from the breaking wave on my left, those sharks swimming under me were going my speed and direction. I’d said to myself “that’s odd, they usually scatter” – they WERE hunting!!

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Jason places his forefinger and thumb where the shark's teeth ripped into his foot straps. Just below his thumb is where the injury to his foot occurred.

Inlets, naturally, are a favorite place for sharks to hunt, since the strong currents move a lot of bait fish during tidal changes. So there’s no surprise that the sharks were actively hunting.

We’re glad Jason was able to get back to shore before his blood attracted the sharks to him. As you may recall, not long ago another kiteboarder was not so lucky.

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Another view of the damage to the kiteboard foot strap done by the Spinner shark.

Thanks again to Jason for sharing his “adventure” with us.

Still, I’m thinking Jason harbors no ill will toward the sharks, and will probably be right back in the water as soon as he can.

Am I right, Jason?

http://www.blogthebeach.com/
If you or a loved one was involved in a negative sharky encounter please contact us!!!
http://sharkattacksurvivors.com/general-contact-us/survivor-contact-survivors-only
Shark Attack Survivors visitors we have been working hard to establish a worldwide team of survivors for our Survivors Services to assist other survivors. We could use some help Please Donate!!!

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