Diver on gator attack: 'I started punching ... he let go' - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Diver on gator attack: 'I started punching ... he let go'

Posted: Updated:
  • NationalMore>>

  • Former US poet laureate Donald Hall dies in New Hampshire

    Former US poet laureate Donald Hall dies in New Hampshire

    Sunday, June 24 2018 12:30 PM EDT2018-06-24 16:30:00 GMT
    The daughter of former U.S. poet laureate Donald Hall says he has died at age 8 at his home in Wilmot, New Hampshire.More >>
    The daughter of former U.S. poet laureate Donald Hall says he has died at age 8 at his home in Wilmot, New Hampshire.More >>
  • Association removes Laura Ingalls Wilder's name from award

    Association removes Laura Ingalls Wilder's name from award

    Sunday, June 24 2018 12:24 PM EDT2018-06-24 16:24:53 GMT
    A division of the American Library Association has voted to remove Laura Ingalls Wilder's name from a major children's book award over concerns about the way the early-to-mid 20th century author portrayed blacks...More >>
    A division of the American Library Association has voted to remove Laura Ingalls Wilder's name from a major children's book award over concerns about the way the early-to-mid 20th century author portrayed blacks and Native Americans.More >>
  • Authorities investigating fatal Minneapolis police shooting

    Authorities investigating fatal Minneapolis police shooting

    Sunday, June 24 2018 12:19 PM EDT2018-06-24 16:19:24 GMT
    (Aaron Lavinsky/Star Tribune via AP). A crowd gathers near the scene of an officer-involved shooting which took place a few hours earlier Saturday, June 23, 2018, in Minneapolis. Police in Minneapolis say officers shot and killed a man who was firing a...(Aaron Lavinsky/Star Tribune via AP). A crowd gathers near the scene of an officer-involved shooting which took place a few hours earlier Saturday, June 23, 2018, in Minneapolis. Police in Minneapolis say officers shot and killed a man who was firing a...
    Authorities are investigating after Minneapolis police on Saturday shot and killed a man following reports he was firing a handgun as he walked outside.More >>
    Authorities are investigating after Minneapolis police on Saturday shot and killed a man following reports he was firing a handgun as he walked outside.More >>

FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) - A Florida man who was attacked by an alligator while diving for golf balls in a lake says the reptile grabbed his arm and wouldn't let go so he started punching it in the eyes.

Scott Lahodik told Fox 13 that he was diving on Friday and felt the alligator clamp onto his arm.

"He just came and, full blast, grabbed my arm all the way back in his throat and then he started to roll with me," Lahodik said from his hospital room in the southwest Florida city of Fort Myers. "He rolled a couple times and then he still didn't let go so I knew I had to do something, so I started punching him up by the eye and then he let go."

He said he punched the gator in the eyes and managed to get out of the water. He hopped in a golf cart so he could seek medical assistance.

"I was going to lay down on the green, but I knew if I did I didn't think I would make it," he said.

Lahodik said he'd made a career diving for golf balls since he retired from the military in 1988. He has 400 stitches and staples in his arm and thinks his diving days are over.

His wife, Maritza Lahodik, said she'll never forget the call from her husband moments after he escaped the animal's jaws.

"I got a call with him screaming on the other line with a gut-wrenching sound telling me that he had been attacked by an alligator," she said. "Given the fact that this gator was the size that it was, where it happened and how it had happened, I have no qualms about saying that this was a miracle, that I believe that God was protecting him."

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • More NewsMore>>

  • Local leaders push for federal funding, support in Washington D.C.

    Local leaders push for federal funding, support in Washington D.C.

    Sunday, June 24 2018 12:28 PM EDT2018-06-24 16:28:36 GMT

    Local leaders meet with state and federal lawmakers to push for more federal funding and jobs. The focus of their conversations last week centered around the future of the Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Camp Ravenna and the Mahoning River.   Guy Coviello, vice president of government affairs at the chamber and Brad Ehrhart, president of the Portage Development Board joined WFMJ Weekend Today's Press Pass to talk about the conversations they had with state representatives and U....

    More >>

    Local leaders meet with state and federal lawmakers to push for more federal funding and jobs. The focus of their conversations last week centered around the future of the Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Camp Ravenna and the Mahoning River.   Guy Coviello, vice president of government affairs at the chamber and Brad Ehrhart, president of the Portage Development Board joined WFMJ Weekend Today's Press Pass to talk about the conversations they had with state representatives and U....

    More >>
  • Mentor Police Officer killed by hit-and-run

    Mentor Police Officer killed by hit-and-run

    Sunday, June 24 2018 12:21 PM EDT2018-06-24 16:21:41 GMT

    A Mentor Police officer was killed by a hit and run driver early Sunday morning. The Mercer Police Departments Facebook page reports that they are seeking assistance in the location of the suspect's vehicle. The officer, whose identity has not yet been released, was struck by the driver around 1:00 a.m., while he was assisting in a traffic stop on State Route 2 Eastbound, according to the information on the Departments Facebook. Reports state that he was taken to TriPoint Medical C...

    More >>

    A Mentor Police officer was killed by a hit and run driver early Sunday morning. The Mercer Police Departments Facebook page reports that they are seeking assistance in the location of the suspect's vehicle. The officer, whose identity has not yet been released, was struck by the driver around 1:00 a.m., while he was assisting in a traffic stop on State Route 2 Eastbound, according to the information on the Departments Facebook. Reports state that he was taken to TriPoint Medical C...

    More >>
  • Weekend warriors unite in Steel Valley Flag Football Association

    Weekend warriors unite in Steel Valley Flag Football Association

    Sunday, June 24 2018 11:00 AM EDT2018-06-24 15:00:29 GMT

    Sundays are made for football, even this time of year. Every week, if you head over to Oakland Field in Youngstown you can get your fix with the Steel Valley Flag Football Association. 

    More >>

    Sundays are made for football, even this time of year. Every week, if you head over to Oakland Field in Youngstown you can get your fix with the Steel Valley Flag Football Association. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 WFMJ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms