The barrels were red with blood
Lucas McKaine Ransom, 19, died after having his leg bitten off by a shark while he was body boarding with a friend about 100 metres offshore of Surf Beach on the property of Vandenberg Air Force Base about 130 miles (about 210 km) northwest of Los Angeles, California.
The shark, believed to be great white and reported to be between 14 and 20 feet long, attacked without warning and pulled Ransom under the water. His friend and other witnesses pulled him from the water. He was pronounced dead at the scene by officials at the Air Force base.
His friend, Matthew Garcia, was quoted in various media as saying he was 2 feet away when the shark breached the water on its side and attacked without warning.
“There was no sign, there was nothing. It was all very fast, very stealth.”
He said the shark appeared to be about 18 feet long.
“We were just in perfect water. The waves were perfect, great barrels. You hear a surfer say, ‘Oh, perfect waves’ — well, the waves do not get any better than they were today.”
“When the shark hit him, he just said, ‘Help me, dude!’ He knew what was going on. It was really fast. You just saw a red wave and this water is blue — as blue as it could ever be — and it was just red, the whole wave. Even the barrel was red.”
He said, as waves (reportedly 6-8 foot surf that day) broke over his head, he tried to find his friend who had been dragged underwater. He turned towards shore to go get help and then saw his red body board pop up. He swam to his friend and did chest compressions as he brought him to shore.
“He was just floating in the water. I flipped him over on his back and underhooked his arms. I was pressing on his chest and doing rescue breathing in the water.
“He was just kind of lifeless, just dead weight.”