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1979/11/27 Kenny Doudt - Oregon -

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1979/11/27 Kenny Doudt - Oregon -

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Account of shark attack gory in details

county Account of shark attack gory in details
[body][newby]|Tony Simmons|The News Herald|#On Nov. 27, 1979, 26-year-old carpenter Kenny Doudt was out surfing with friends off the coast of Oregon. He had just quit his job, was recently separated from his wife, and desperately missed his two young sons. It was them he thought of as he struggled back toward shore after being attacked by a great white shark.

In his book, /Surfing with the Great White Shark,/ Doudt describes the attack:

``There was no warning. Floating on his board about fifty feet away, (Doudt's friend) stared in total disbelief as a mass of light gray rose out of the water, back arching, mouth agape, gills slits flapping, pectoral fins horizontal, and rows of razor-sharp teeth exposed. Paralyzed with terror, he watched helplessly as the shark instantly grabbed me and submerged me under the water.''

The shark had sandwiched Doudt's surfboard also. The board kept the behemoth from staying submerged and frustrated its efforts to rip Doudt into bite-sized chunks. Once the attack broke off, Doudt was able to reach the board and paddle toward shore.

The animal had mangled a section across Doudt's back from armpit to buttocks, exerting about 15,000 pounds per square inch of force with its teeth. Doudt suffered a punctured lung, exposed heart and kidney, shredded muscles, severed nerves, four damaged ribs and massive internal bleeding.

He lost all but one pint of his own blood before he reached the hospital. The doctor stopped counting at 500 stitches. His physician credited severe hypothermia brought on by 50-degree water and 30-degree air temperatures for slowing Doudt's bleeding and saving his life.

Doudt's account of the attack and his subsequent return to surfing is an easy read, written in a conversational tone, surprisingly light yet frighteningly detailed. Anyone who swims or surfs in coastal waters should read his story before they volunteer to become seafood again.

The book is illustrated with photos of Doudt's sons, his surfboard and wetsuit, and his wounds. The pictures of his wounds, taken by a hospital photographer, will hold particular appeal for those who slow down to gawk at car wrecks or watch /I Witness Video/ religiously.


#[135]n#[81]/Surfing with the Great White Shark, by Kenny Doudt, 88 page trade paperback, photo illustrated, published by Shark-Bite Publishing, Lihue, HI 96766, $8.95. Available at bookstores or by calling toll-free, 1-800-345-0096./

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