Man loses quarter of his skull after alligator attacks him

Joe Harker

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Man loses quarter of his skull after alligator attacks him

Featured Image Credit: Sunrise/Defeat X

A man who lost a quarter of his skull in a vicious alligator attack has spoken about his terrifying experience.

US firefighter Juan Carlos La Verde was almost killed when he ended up being confronted by an alligator and heard a 'loud popping sound' as its teeth closed around his head.

He was in the water filming a promotional video for his adventuring company Defeat X as a drone flew overhead and filmed him in the water.

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La Verde said he somehow managed to survive after getting the alligator's jaws open and get himself free before swimming for the shore.

He hadn't spotted the alligator in the water because he'd forgotten to bring his goggles with him, meaning his vision of anything moving around was obscured.

However, videographer Matt was filming the whole thing with his drone and footage of the incident captured the moment something shot towards him like a torpedo.

In the most horrific turn of events, it turned out to be an alligator with one purpose in mind - eating La Verde.

Speaking to Sunrise, the 34-year-old explained that he didn't even know he was sharing the water with an alligator until the beast's jaws were already clamped around him.

That thing on the left is Juan Carlos La Verde, that thing on the right is an alligator headed right for him. Credit: Defeat X
That thing on the left is Juan Carlos La Verde, that thing on the right is an alligator headed right for him. Credit: Defeat X

He said: "I felt its teeth after feeling the scales. Because if you look at the video closely I continued swimming, and I immediately knew what situation I was in, there is only one thing that would feel like that."

"And then I heard my jaw snap."

His partner Christine said she was 'inspired' by La Verde's recovery, saying he had 'recovered so quickly' from his serious wounds suffered in the alligator's jaws.

He remembered how during the attack his whole head and upper torso had been inside the alligator's mouth when he felt the teeth pierce his skull.

Alligator and human span in the water together, something La Verde believes was an attempt at the infamous 'death roll', and yet he did not die.

His solution for getting outside the alligator's mouth was to put more of himself inside the beast's jaws, sticking his arms in and being able to work himself free while the alligator was upside down.

La Verde is able to break himself out of the alligator's jaws and swim to freedom. Credit: Defeat X
La Verde is able to break himself out of the alligator's jaws and swim to freedom. Credit: Defeat X

Once free he immediately swam for the safety of the shore, and once away safely the adrenaline of the situation wore off and he was struck with terrible pain.

Although bleeding badly and almost killed by the alligator's attacks, La Verde thought he'd better go and make sure Matt knew he was alright and ended up walking into a family's backyard.

He eventually made it to hospital, where after six hours of surgery he was set on the road to recovery.

It's quite incredible, really.

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Topics: Community, News, US News, Animals

Joe Harker
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