Shark Bites 14-Year-Old Girl

Lou Ann Hutto, left, answers questions along with her husband, Roger, center, and oldest son, Brian, right, during a news conference in Nashville, Tenn., Wednesday, July 13, 2005, about the recovery of her youngest son, Craig, from a shark attack June 27. The family said that Craig, who lost a leg from the attack in Florida, is recovering at home in Lebanon, Tenn., after spending 16 days in the hospital.
AP
A 14-year-old girl was bitten by a shark on her left food while she was swimming in waist-deep water in the Gulf of Mexico off the Texas coast, officials said.

Lydia Paulk suffered lacerations on the top of her foot and was in fair condition Wednesday night after surgery, said Cathy Nall, a spokeswoman for the University of Texas Medical Branch in nearby Galveston. Nall said additional surgery is planned for Friday to reattach tendons.

Lydia, whose family lives near Charlotte, North Carolina, was swimming with family and friends when she felt something hit her leg and grab her foot. She saw the 4-foot-long (1-meter-long) shark swim away after it had bitten her.

Marine experts have said sharks are on the move during summer months and frequently mine the shallow Gulf of Mexico waters for fish.

A teenager who lost a leg because of a shark attack in Florida is recovering at home after 16 days in the hospital, his family said Wednesday.

Lydia, whose family lives near Charlotte, N.C., was swimming with family and friends when she felt something hit her leg and grab her foot. She saw the 4-foot-long shark swim away after it had bitten her.

Marine experts have said sharks are on the move during summer months and frequently mine the shallow Gulf of Mexico waters for fish.

Craig Hutto, 17, of Lebanon, Tenn., was attacked June 27 while fishing in the surf off Cape San Blas, Fla. The shark's bite nearly severed his right leg, and it had to be amputated.

"He made it home in two weeks, and that's a tribute to the doctors," brother Brian Hutto said during a news conference. The 25-year-old has been credited with helping fight off the shark and getting his brother to shore.

Hutto is using a walker and later will be fitted with an artificial leg, according to a spokesman for Monroe Carrell Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt University. The teenager was transferred there last week from a Florida hospital.

The shark attack on Hutto was one of three during a seven-day period along Florida's Gulf Coast. A 14-year-old girl from Louisiana was killed June 25, and a 19-year-old from Austria was bitten on his ankle July 1.