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Mom recalls ‘feeling the bone’ as she helped a homeless man whose arm was ripped off by a gator

Mom recalls ‘feeling the bone’ as she helped a homeless man whose arm was ripped off by a gator

Showing little fear, Good Samaritans rushed to help a homeless man who had his arm ripped off in an alligator attack. Now, some of those who helped save his life are speaking out.

Kendall Hardester and her high school friend Ismail Rainey came across the gruesome scene around 1:30 am Sunday on a path near Lake Monroe in Sanford, Florida. There, a homeless man was bleeding after losing his arm in an alligator attack.

Hardester told The Independent her mom instincts kicked in and she rushed to help the homeless victim.

She found the man with flesh hanging loose and the bone sticking out.

“I wasn’t grossed out personally,” Hardester said, “until I was actually holding it and could feel the bone.”

Hardester used a small towel to help the man until paramedics arrived. Footage from the scene showed Hardester, Rainey and a small crowd trying to help the man until first responders arrived.

Kendall Hardester speaks about her efforts to save a homeless man who had his arm ripped off in an alligator attack.
Kendall Hardester speaks about her efforts to save a homeless man who had his arm ripped off in an alligator attack. (Fox 35 Orlando)

The homeless man had gone for a swim in the lake unaware it was infested with gators, according to Fox 35 Orlando. His arm was ripped off in the attack and the man left the water.

Hardester told the Independent there wasn’t a lot of blood or a trail.

She also said the victim and others nearby were afraid the gator would come back and continue to attack. But she wasn’t worried and believes the alligator thought the man was food when he went for a swim.

Authorities said the victim is expected to survive and Hardester said they tried to see him in the hospital – but couldn’t since they didn’t know his name.

The mom said she hopes she gets to speak to the victim to let him know she is glad he survived, but she also “has questions for him as well.”

They left their names and phone numbers hoping he would reach out. Hardester said she had no doubt that despite the graphic injury, he wasn’t meant to die that day.

“I somehow just knew he was going to be OK,” Hardester told The Independent.


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