Surfer's son a shark attack hero
THE victim of last week’s shark attack has spoken about the terrifying incident and how his son’s warning may have saved his life — or at least his leg.
Ashley Ramage was surfing with son Damon at Archie’s Beach at around 4.30pm on Wednesday when the teen yelled, “Dad!”
“The way he said it, I just new something was wrong,” Mr Ramage said.
“I turned around to look at him and saw this big grey shape and a fin come out of the water at me.”
Mr Ramage said what he believes was a silky shark smashed into the back of his surfboard.
“I was pretty lucky to get a warning. Damon yelling gave me enough time to lift my feet out of the water,” he said.
“I just thought: ‘This can’t be happening.’”
Mr Ramage used his board to create a barrier between himself and the shark, which tried to attack from several angles.
“It was like the shark was head butting my board,” he said.
“Then it all went quiet and I thought it was underneath me so I was punching the water trying to get a lucky shot in. After that I jumped on my board and frantically paddled in yelling at Damon to go in.”
Thirteen-year-old Damon said he was shocked watching his father fending off the shark.
“I was really scared for my Dad,” he said.
“I knew it would be stupid to go over there but I didn’t know what to do. My mind was blank.”
Damon said he and Mr Ramage had been paddling away from the shore when the attack happened.
“It came from behind him in the shallower water,” he said.
“I was about 10 metres away when I saw the fin and yelled out. It was bigger than his board.”
Mr Ramage said he was relieved it was him and not his son who had got the shark’s attention.
“I’ve reversed the situation a few times in my head thinking what if it had been Damon. The thought is just horrifying,” he said.
Mr Ramage has been surfing for 14 years and his son for two.
“I have seen plenty of sharks at the Sunshine Coast but none have ever taken any interest in me,” he said.
“I honestly think that I was extremely unlucky. I have never seen a shark around Bundaberg.”
The avid surfer said he was shocked that he did not notice the shark before it attacked.
“It was one of the clearest days I have ever seen in Bundaberg,” Mr Ramage said.
“It was such a beautiful day and the water was crystal clear. I was surprised the shark came from the shallow water as well. You always think something will come from out further.”
The pair faced their fears on Sunday afternoon and headed to Nielson Park Beach for a surf.
“I know I was definitely feeling a bit jumpy,” Mr Ramage said.
“We wanted to get back out there and get that under our belts. We didn’t want anything to change. I was definitely keeping a close eye on Damon, though.”
Mr Ramage said he would not be surfing without a buddy for a long time.
“There is a lot to be said for surfing with a buddy,” he said.
“I don’t know what would have happened without that warning. I think we will be a bit more picky about where we surf from now on.”
Tell us what you think, leave your comments below ...
Read more ...