Tuesday, June 21, 2016

A marathon runner who was almost killed by a bear shares details of her survival

Karen Williams was running a marathon in New Mexico when she was attacked by a bear just a few miles from the finish line. After the athlete sprinted past one of the bear’s cubs she got viciously attacked by the animal that tried to kill her. Luckily Karen outsmarted the bear by pretending to be dead. She has since revealed details of her attack and how she survived in a post on Facebook. See the post after the cut.

Karen wrote:
I was at mile 23.5 per Garmin and coming up a little rise just before that terrible off-trail uphill. There was some sort of seep or pond or mucky area at the top of that little hill and when I topped it a bear was charging me. She was about 15 ft away. I raised my arms and yelled "NO!" then saw the cub. Then I was on my ass and being raked with claws and bitten. I cried out in pain and Mama bear did not like that so she hit me with a left hook and bit my neck and started to try to shake me. I rolled into a ball and played dead. She went off about 25 - 30 feet and stopped at the base of a tree and huffed at her cub that was up about 30 feet.  
The cub cried a bit while trying to get down the tree. Mama bear kept glancing my way to make sure that I was still "dead". I was at that point afraid I might die. I didn't know what the wound on my neck was like because I did not move for fear she would come wail on me some more. I waited about 10 minutes until the huffing she was doing was gone and I couldn't hear the cub anymore. Then I tried to look around but was having trouble seeing much. I tried to sit up but was nauseated and my arms didn't seem to work right.  
After 14 hours at UNMH and a cool helicopter ride and a very bumpy ambulance ride prior it turns out that I have a fractured right orbit from the mean left hook, missing parts of eyelid and eyebrow, injury to the belly of my left bicep and a lot of punctures and lacerations. But I am alive. Unfortunately the bear is not. Game and Wildlife found her and she is being tested for rabies. They are hoping to catch her cub/cubs.