911 call released after UNCW student reportedly bitten by shark


OCEAN ISLE BEACH, NC (WWAY) — The 911 call has been released from the moment UNCW student Austin Reed was reportedly bitten by a shark Monday.

19-year-old Reed must have had a weird feeling Monday. He actually says he thought he was going to get bitten by a shark yesterday.

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Dispatcher: “911, what is the location of the emergency?”

Caller: “Hi, we’re on the Ocean Isle Beach – Beaufort Street. We’ve got a shark bite here.”

For the young surfer, it was a day on the beach he’ll likely never forget. Reed says it all happened in just seconds.

“I just felt something grab onto my leg,” Reed said. “Then I looked at it and there was blood everywhere.”

Reed was surfing with his friend when he felt the shark bite down.

“I felt like its teeth kind of go up and grab onto my leg,” he said. “I guess I was kind of in shock for a second because I never thought that I was going to get bit by a shark.”

Reed says the shark latched onto his foot, then came a moment of panic.

He and his friend rushed to shore.

The 911 caller describes Reed’s injuries to dispatchers.

Dispatcher: “Is his foot still attached?

Caller: “Yes, it’s still on there.”

Dispatcher: “Is he missing any skin?

Caller: “No. I think it was just like a bite.”

Reed says his mom, an E.R. nurse, started wrapping his foot in towels as a crowd joined around them on the beach.

“I was kind of scared to look at it,” Reed said. “I was kind of scared that maybe the shark had maybe taken a toe off or something. You can see some bones in my foot, so it got me pretty good.”

Caller: “They said his bone is out. You cant see it.

Dispatcher: “You can see his bone?”

Caller: “You can see his bone in the foot.”

Reed was rushed to New Hanover Regional Medical Center for surgery.

He plans to return to the ocean eventually.

“I think I’m going to be a pool person for a little bit, but I think I’ll definitely go back out to the beach,” he said. “I don’t think it’s going to stop me.”

Reed says he’s thankful to his friend for reacting so quickly and helping him paddle back to shore.

He also says he doesn’t want his experience to keep anyone from enjoying the beach.