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Teenager pleaded for her life in horror shark attack

3 min read

An American teenager almost lost her hand during a terrifying shark attack whilst on a family holiday in the Bahamas.

The wounded teen was left with a shark tooth embedded in her flesh and forced to have two surgeries following the attack.

Speaking to Fox 29, Sophia Scroggie, 19, recalled trying to kick away the bull sharks that lunged at her during an ocean swim with her younger sister Olivia.

She said: "I remember screaming on the boat, 'Someone help me, please. Help me get on the boat,' and I remember my older sister grabbed me by my shoulders and just lunged me into the boat."

Her right hand is scarred after being bitten by a bull shark, and Sophia has been recovering at her parent's home in Boca Raton, Florida.

The teenager has been on a break with her family over the Fourth of July weekend, when many Americans go on holiday, when the attack took place.

Along with little sister Olivia, Sophia had jumped off a boat into the ocean to spear a hogfish, a hobby their father Arturo Scroggie had enjoyed for almost 40 years.

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Yet moments after the girls had got into the water and were bringing the fish to the surface, they were faced with the deadly creature.

Sophia recalled: "I was holding the fish up. Just, the next thing I remember was seeing a bull shark jumping out at my face and just being thrown into kind of an adrenaline panic of, 'Oh, gosh, there (are) sharks.' .

"And then I can see blood start pooling in the water and I just remember kicking and just trying to keep seeing the sharks lunge at me."

Her sister Olivia added: "I couldn't kick it really and my dad always told us to punch the nose, so that's what I aimed for and it scared them off.

"I remember another shark charging me again. It must have been following Sophia because of the blood."

The 19-year-old was bleeding heavily and calling out for help but luckily her other sister Nicole helped pull the teen onto the boat to safety.

Nicole then wrapped Sophia's hand in towels and attempted to stop the bleeding as the siblings raced to the nearest Bahamian clinic, an hour-and-a-half away.

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By this time, Arturo was seriously worried about his daughter, and said he had never seen someone get bitten by a shark in all his time spearfishing.

He added: "Then you start thinking, 'Oh my gosh, is she going to be OK?'"

Sophia's hand would need two surgeries to repair the damage, as five tendons were cut during the attack.

"If I had waited a split second longer my hand could have been gone," she added.

Doctors even found a fragment of the shark's tooth in Sophia's ring finger, which had gotten stuck as she frantically tried to escape.

"[He] got a little piece of me, but I got a little piece of him, too," she joked.

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