13-Year-Old Florida Girl Recovering After Fighting Off Shark

The teen says she plans to return to the beach after getting her 19 stitches removed.

Video via NBC News

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Video via NBC News

A 13-year-old Florida girl is recovering after fighting off a shark.

The incident occurred in the Fort Pierce Beach area, per an initial exclusive from regional outlet WPLG, with 13-year-old Ella Reed saying that she was sitting in waist-deep water at the time. While the encounter lasted only a few seconds, she sustained multiple injuries requiring 19 stitches.

"The shark itself was so powerful," the teen said. "That was what I felt the most is it, like, hitting my stomach really hard."

At first, Reed was able to get the shark away from her by punching it; the shark immediately returned, however, at which point the teen says she continued to fight it off.

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The encounter resulted in injuries to the teen’s stomach, knee, arm, and finger. Reed, who called her mother immediately after the incident, says she initially didn’t feel the pain of her injuries due to her adrenaline being “through the roof.”

Per a separate report from the Today show, Reed’s 19 stitches included five on her torso and 14 on her leg. Moving forward, Reed intends to continue returning to the beach, noting that she's going to "keep on coming back" once her stitches are removed. She also has goals of one day working in the marine biology field.

As for what kind of shark was involved in the widely covered incident, reports say it was believed to have been a bull shark up to six feet in length.

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